Powering your business growth with the One Page Strategic Plan

October 30, 2022 Neale Lewis

What is the  One Page Strategic Plan?

Growth Simplified

Running a successful business is a strategic endeavour. Guesswork, no matter how good your instincts, can only take you so far. The “One Page Strategic Plan” is a tool that requires focus to develop and discipline to execute against.

Originally developed by Verne Harnish and explained in his books, Mastering the Rockefeller Habits and Scaling Up, the One Page Strategic Plan is a deceptively simple yet powerful tool that helps you focus your vision and strategy down to a single, action-oriented page. It is the culmination of decisions a growth company must make regarding four critical business factors to successfully scale up–people, strategy, execution and cash.

Verne Harnish believes that if you want to get everyone in your company on the same one page, you need to be able to articulate your strategy in one page. The One Page Strategic Plan ( OPSP )  forces you to get to the heart of what you want to accomplish.

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Here are five keys to creating your One Page Strategic Plan

Verifying your Executive Team is Healthy and Aligned

In the beginning, core values are uncovered, purpose is articulated and both become second nature for all employees. Developing four to five core values is important to company identity and culture. You want your core values pasted on every wall in sight. But you don’t want them to just be wallpaper. Speak to them on a daily basis. Avoid “corporate speak” when you do. Addressing them out loud, verbatim, will tell you whether they pass or fail the reality test. Having a purpose gives your company the critical “why” behind all that it does. Your purpose needs to be more than just making money. It is no less than the reason your company exists.

Using your BHAG to Provide Direction and Focus 

Once you’ve discovered your company’s Core Values and Purpose, you can use them to identify your Big Hairy Audacious Goal (BHAG). Every business needs a BHAG. The BHAG is the achievable Everest your organisation needs to climb. It is a 10 to 15-year goal that captures where the company sees itself in the long term. It provides motivation for everyone in the organisation, and it provides a focus for the strategies and plans that will take you there.

Making Brand Promises only to your Core Customers

The brand promises articulated in your One Page Strategic Plan are guarantees that distinguish you from your competitors and help you connect with your target customers. Under promising is lazy. At the same time, promising too much likely means you’re succumbing to the temptation to invite everyone to the party, which is tempting. The more the merrier, at least at first. But as you scale up, the undesirables will gobble up your time and disrupt your focus. Identifying your core customers saves time and sharpens focus.

Winning Moves to Accelerate your Company’s Revenue Growth

Objectives like developing your leadership team, improving your infrastructure and streamlining internal communications can help you compete, but they don’t address what you need to do to win. “Winning moves” grow revenue. It’s important to aggressively seek-out moves that help you win the individual battles necessary for growth. Develop action items, assign them to specific people and set crystal clear metrics for success

Leading Indicators Help You Measure Results

Leading indicators can be quantitative, but the economists of the world are on top of that. Leading indicators in your company are assumptions about what the future holds. It’s important to identify one or two leading indicators (no more) that you will use to help measure your organisation’s progress in meeting its goals. As with all assumptions, they need to be verified frequently.

Example of a completed One Page Strategic Plan ( OPSP )

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