The Importance of a Business Plan
When we first released FooBox, the business plan was simple. Make the best responsive lightbox for WordPress. Period.
Because there was only one product to focus on and to promote and support, the goals of this “business plan” were fairly straight forward to stick to on any given day.
It hasn’t been this easy since launching our FooPlugins marketplace.
The Problem We’re Facing (in my opinion)
In short, our business plan seems to be getting redefined weekly, if not daily.
This is due to many things, some of which are:
- A plethora of plugin ideas
- Feature requests and bug fixes for current plugins
- Unexpected partnership deals that require programming and marketing changes
- A lack of strictly defined goals
- Other responsibilities for individual team members
In themselves, the items above aren’t bad things. In fact, these are some of the very subjects that continue to drive our business forward and how we stay on top of things happening in our WordPress Development and Marketing communities.
The problem is that when combined, these things have a tendency to derail the overall vision and goals of our business. It’s easy to end up jumping from one thing to another with the end result being dozens of great ideas and products that are half thought out, half developed, and half marketed.
That’s not fair to the idea, our customers, or ourselves.
So what’s the best way to move forward to ensure long term success and innovative and cutting edge WordPress plugin solutions?
The Proposed Solution
There is no magic bullet, but there are some things I think we can do to create a more narrow focus and ensure we’re not trying to do everything all at once.
- Additional discussion and hard decisions of the yearly business goals.
- Document the plan and make sure everyone is reminded of it on a regular basis.
- Self-editing. Define one goal at a time and stick to it until completion.
- Feature freezes. This is absolutely easier said than done.
Our customers constantly communicate some great feature requests for our plugins, and because we like to make sure we’re meeting their needs, sometimes this can change the focus too much and take us away from an already defined end goal.
These are just a few things that I will personally be focusing on in relation to growing our business.
How do you create and stick to your business plan?
Please let me know your best tips for creating and adhering to a business plan in the comments.