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Six Steps to Creating a “Must-Have” Organizational Plan
Do you have an organizational plan? Everything starts with planning. Whether you want to start a business, grow the business, or simply perform the necessary tasks to keep the business profitable. Without proper planning, all you have is an unfruitful idea.
All business plans require Organizational Planning. It is an integral part of defining your business module and your objectives. It is extremely important for business owners to have an organizational plan in place in order to navigate the daily progress efficiently. It should delineate not only your organizational structure of departments, managers, and staff but also the functions, tasks, and processes they regularly execute.
Your organizational plan should flow from your strategic plan. The strategic plan defines your long-term goals for the business, which can only be accomplished by achieving your organizational plan’s benchmarks.
These concepts may seem highly cumbersome, but let’s take a look at why you need Organizational Planning and how best to manipulate it for your business’s success.
Importance of an Organizational Plan
A detailed organizational plan is crucial for every small business. Besides outlining all the tasks, functions, and goals for a department or area, it should also show the assigned responsible person. It is also helpful to have organizational structures that clearly show supervisory relationships as well as the power structures for accountability.
This plan is the best way to simply and distinctly communicate what everyone should be doing and how it relates to the business as a whole.
Here are a few things you can accomplish with a well-defined Organizational Plan
Clarifies the role and function of each staff member
Having a defined Organizational Plan helps each member of your team understand what is expected of them. Their roles are preset; therefore, they can diligently perform their tasks without any confusion. This helps you finish your projects or reach your targets faster and more efficiently.
Shows how the staff is contributing to the goals of your business
A proper organizational plan helps you track your employees’ progress, which helps you determine just how useful they are to your organization. This comes in handy, especially at the time of appraisals and/or dismissal.
Displays managerial and team relationships
An organizational plan helps in determining the structural interaction between management and the teams. Each manager or supervisor can analyze, track, and evaluate how each team member contributes to the business function. This is useful for identifying who requires more training or guidance or even recognizing those who can handle a more substantial workload.
Can reveal gaps, issues, and liabilities
The incredible opportunity to track the progress of each task, team, project, and target actually provides insight into any shortcomings as well. Organizational planning helps identify any inadequacies or limitations that may be hindering the growth of your business.
Clarifies the when’s, how’s, and who’s in your processes.
Each member of your business has a strength, unlike others, and can handle specific types of tasks. With proper organizational planning, you can delegate the appropriate tasks at the right time to the most efficient member of the team for elevated output.
It makes it quick work to know whom to turn to when there is a problem.
Organizational planning invariably provides a detailed account of everyone’s strengths and weaknesses. Therefore, when you are faced with a difficult situation, you know exactly which member of your team can effectively solve the problem.
Everyone working with you needs to be aware of this information. Whether they are working at an entry-level or as management, their roles and expectations should be clearly defined. You can post it in a conspicuous place, whether it’s on a bulletin board or your internal website, so each member is well-informed of their responsibilities and the vision of the company.
Six Steps to Create Your Organizational Plan
If you already have an organizational plan, then it is good to verify and update all the necessary information. However, if you don’t already have an organizational strategy, it is not too late to start one now.
Following are the steps for creating your own organizational plan.
- Pick Your Team – Choose an efficient team based on their skills, strengths, and determination for success.
- Draw a Chart Showing Your Organizational Structure – Share your company’s progress and the targets you have set for short-term and long-term goals.
- Drive Out Goals & Objectives – Define the company’s goals and objectives in detail to help them understand the vitality of their roles.
- List All Tasks and Functions – Predefine their roles and stress on their tasks and functions so they know what is expected of them.
- Review Current Business Processes – Go over the business’s current situation so everyone is aware of the current state and how they can contribute to the company’s growth.
- Compile Findings into Organizational Plan – Invite their input and design an effective organizational plan.
Let us take a detailed look at these steps to create an Organizational Plan.
#1: Drive Out Goals & Objectives
All organizational plans need to include what the business wants to accomplish and how to get there. Clearly, state what you want your business to become – which drives out your goal/destination and the objectives/measurements for reaching it.
Common goals include:
- internal stability> reducing staff turnover, promoting consistency
- creativity> inspiring innovation, ingenuity, and improvements
- uniformity> consistent delivery of goods and services; branding
- security> protecting data of customers, vendors, and the business
- quality control> focusing on excellence
- accountability > identifying who’s responsible
- integrity > transparency, honesty, fairness
- rapid delivery of goods > improving turnaround
- excellent customer service> exceeding expectations
- efficiency > refinements that lead to optimum operations
#2: Pick Your Team
While you may prefer to do everything yourself, it is imperative to engage with others when creating a plan for their knowledge, ideas, and perspectives. Every member of your team has a strength, unlike others. Some may be talented with development, while others have an innate sense of design.
You must ensure that each member has a vision for the company and their personal progress that aligns with your drive.
Look at your team and select your key players – that is, those staff members:
- who understand the current systems, processes, values, and goals
- who can offer worthwhile suggestions for improvements
- who can visualize and evaluate the effects that changes may have within the business (as changes typically occur during this process)
This team can be reconvened in the future to help with implementing your plans for the growth and development of the business.
Note that while most small business owners develop the organizational plan on their own, there may be time, staffing, or deadline constraints that make hiring an outside consultant a better choice.
#3: Review Current Business Processes
Write out each of your processes in detail. Look at what it does and how it does it. Then, list all the functions and tasks it performs as well as who does what.
|Process||What It Does||How it Does it||Executed By||Functions/Tasks|
|Paying an Invoice||Pays a Service Provider for Services or Products Rendered||Through Accounts Payable System||Mary Jones||Enters billing information in the A/P system, which generates & prints a check|
An often surprising result of this step is you will most likely realize there are differences in how the processes actually work versus how you thought they worked.
This step can be extremely time-consuming and, therefore, is why many small businesses hire a business consultant or business coach. It helps them realize a clear vision of what to expect instead of nurturing a delusion.
Thus a business consultant can actually help you formulate a more substantial and realistic organizational plan and make the necessary changes to accomplish your targets.
#4: List Tasks and Functions
Capture all the tasks and functions that your business is and should be performing. Include those things in your vision that you want the organization to do.
This process should drive out the gaps. You’ll see what is missing: perhaps where your company is lacking key pieces such as documentation, training, or analysis. It can also reveal issues and vulnerabilities (ex. insufficient safety practices or improper workarounds).
Once you have identified the factors hindering the company’s growth, you can look for viable solutions to address them. You can discuss these problems with your team and get their input.
This step can be easily combined with brainstorming to solve any existing problems before moving forward with your organizational plan.
#5: Draw Out Your Organizational Structure
Now would be a good time to draft an organizational structure chart. Map the current progress, your vision, the targets, all the shortcomings, and the viable solutions. Visual aids can help you, and your team determines exactly what needs to be done.
Include all the departments, roles, staff, and reporting structure. Define each section with clarity so each team, and the members consisting of them, are well aware of their responsibilities and their roles.
Simplicity and precision are the keys to defining an effective organizational plan. So you must pay attention to the details without complicating the plan.
#6: Compile Findings into Organizational Plan
The last step is to gather the collected information into one document.
Everything you have discussed and planned with your selective team should be compiled for posterity. This helps you track the progress of your organizational plan and make necessary updates or changes along the way.
Remember that your organizational plan is a part of your strategic plan for the company. It will be affected by external factors and subjected to change as per current business standards. Therefore you must prepare for such contingencies and leave room for errors or fallbacks.
Share the organizational plan with your entire staff. This might be an excellent opportunity to call a “town hall” or all-staff meeting.
The grave importance of an effective organizational plan cannot and should not be ignored.
If you are a new business owner, you can consult professional business consultants to devise a beneficial operational plan for your company. Even if you are a freelancer or a small business owner, an organizational plan goes a long way to help you establish your trade as a force to be reckoned with.
If you have an established business, but you know that there is room to grow and expand, you can start making an organizational plan now. You can use the steps that we have defined and seek professional help from business consultants to expand your company and increase your profits in multifold.
It is never too late to make an efficient and effective organizational plan to elevate and expand your business for betterment.
We hope you find this blog helpful in designing an organizational plan for your business.
Have you implemented an organizational plan in your business? If so, share with us what worked for you. Here’s an article on developing a Strategic Plan.