Do you have an I.D.E.A.?

When it comes to growing a business, whether you are a new business owner or you have been in the game for some time, there are many models and strategies that can be used to help you expand your business. But which one is the right one? After all, there are many different types of businesses and many unique entrepreneurial styles.

Before fabricating or adopting a growth strategy, there are a few steps that should be taken that will yield valuable insights about you and the future of your business: where you are and where you want to go.

The I.D.E.A. (identify, develop, evaluate, and act) method is a great way to help you plan the growth of your business. With the completion of each step a clearer picture will begin to form that will help you create and execute a plan of attack.

Identify – Before anything else, you must identify exactly what type of business growth you wish to achieve. This could be anything: the desire for more clients, higher sales, expansion projects, a more diverse product line etc. The sky is the limit. Write down what type of growth you want to obtain.

Develop – In order to arrive at the desired destination there must be signs along the way that will continually point you in the right direction. This is the development stage: constructing milestones or a series of objectives that will help you reach your ultimate goal. These objectives must be specific and they must all successively lead to a higher level of achievement until you reach your final terminus.

Evaluate – In order to stay on the right path you must evaluate your every move. This will help ensure that you are where you need to be and that you are going where you need to go. Without employing this step it is very easy to veer off the correct path. However, the proper use of this step will help you understand exactly what needs to be done and what adjustments need to be made in order to keep your plans on target.

Act – This final step is simply making the necessary adjustments that the 3 previous steps have directed you to make. But keep in mind that you should not become over zealous when it comes to adjusting your plans. Make sure that you leave enough time between the adjustments to see the results. This will help you determine what is and isn’t working.

This exercise is a great starting point for any entrepreneur who is looking to grow their business. Hopefully these steps will help you come up with a plan to get your business where you want it to be.