Your ability to set long-term goals for your business has an inordinate impact on its success. All top executives are long-term thinkers. They project forward five years and figure out what they need to do to achieve their long-term goals. They are constantly asking themselves what they can do to further their business success.
The key to a successful long-term strategic planning process is to identify the core competencies you need in order to position yourself for the future and then set about developing them.
Your job is to constantly think about the future. Through your strategic planning process you must take the necessary steps in the short term to guarantee that you will achieve the profitability you desire in the long term. This ability to think long term has never been more important than it is today. It’s a real key to profitability.
You may have heard it said that when you are up to your you-know-what in alligators, it’s hard to remember you came to drain the swamp. Because of the turbulence of today’s marketplace, most executives act as if they’re firefighters constantly putting out fires. They are totally preoccupied with short-term problems and goals. They intend to spend time thinking about the future but never seem to get around to it.
You need to set clear targets for every part of your business. In fact, your most important responsibility may be to give your employees a clear sense of direction. They can’t do their best without it. According to psychologists, the greatest de-motivator is not knowing what’s expected or being clear about long-term goals.