Acknowledge “Piss Poor Planning”, but Don’t Be A Hostage To It

You may have a different name for it, but we are all familiar with the old 7 P’s thanks to the military. This adage has been around for decades and is going no where anytime soon.

Military Adage:

Proper Planning and Preparation Prevents Piss Poor Performance

This saying has been used by trainers and leaders for a long time. It is likely you have been exposed to it on many occassions. This is a good thing, but should we allow it to hold us hostage? Most people stick to planning when they should be acting on their ideas.

Business owners believe planning is the key to success. Planning is helpful, but can also be negative if you are spending too much time searching for perfection. Attempting to craft the perfect plan so your venture works and doesn’t fail. However, there is research that suggest planning is not always the best option moving forward.

According to the Harvard Business Review’s chapter in Entrepreneurship called “How Entrepreneurs Craft Strategies That Work”, it is suggested planning may not be as wonderful or necessary to business owners as previously thought.

Pg. 58 – 59 of the HBR book says:

Interviews with the founders of 100 companies on the 1989 Inc. “500” list of fastest growing private companies in the United States and recent research on more than 100 other thriving ventures by my MBA students suggest that many successful entrepreneurs spend little time researching and analyzing. And those who do often have to scrap their strategies and start over. Furthermore, a 1990 National Federation of Independent Business study of 2,994 start-ups showed that founders who spent a long time in study, reflection, and planning were no more likely to survive their first three years than people who seized opportunities without planning. In fact, many corporations that revere comprehensive analysis develop a refined incapacity for seizing opportunities. Analysis can delay entry until it’s too late or kill ideas by identifying numerous problems.

Reasons Over-planning Isn’t Necessary

Theory until you get skin in the game

You don’t fully understand an industry or business until you have skin in the game. Planing and planning is great, but once you have skin in the game you are in execution mode. There are events, actions and circumstances that only appear when you are in execution mode. Get here, make the adjustments you need and succeed.

Fast Moving Marketplace

The marketplace is vast moving today. If you take months and months, planning your endeavor you might miss your opportunity. The marketplace is vicious. If you are late to the market, then you could be in a world of trouble moving forward. Cut your planning time down, take some action, and be willing to adapt to the changes in front of you.

New Opportunities

Once you get into execution mode, you will notice a lot of new opportunities. Having skin in the game will allow other opportunities you didn’t see before. Because of the fast moving marketplace, there will be new opportunities, markets, and clients for you attract. This is a main reason you don’t need to spend hours planning. You need to start experiencing all the market has to offer you.

Get off the sidelines of your business. If you have some plans, get them into action. Move into execution mode and get things done. You will find your business much more exciting and your opportunities more available.

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