The usefulness of a business strategy is widely recognized and appreciated by business owners. The business plan acts as the framework for your organization and is a crucial part of the starting and financing process. It just tells a portion of the story, though.
A strategic plan and an operational plan are also necessary to get the full picture and have a foundation on which to construct your firm.
Let’s look at the difference between these plans now.
What is a business plan?
A business plan outlines the “who” and “what” of your company in its most basic form. It outlines who is in charge of the company and what it does. It outlines the goods and services your company offers, as well as its target market.
What is a strategic plan?
A strategic strategy explains the “how” by going beyond the fundamentals of a business plan. The document outlines the company’s long-term objectives and how it plans to attain them.
A strategic strategy examines potential future offerings from your company in terms of goods and services as well as potential new markets. Your long-term growth and expansion plans are laid out in the plan.
What is an operational plan?
An operation plan delves further into your company’s operations to outline how you’ll meet your immediate objectives. Your “when” and “where” of the planning process are determined by this. The operational plan includes information on marketing strategies, short-term product development, and more pressing objectives and projects that will take place over the course of the following year.
The difference between a business plan, a strategic plan, and an operational plan
- In order to explain how you’ll accomplish your short-term goals, an operation plan goes further into your business operations. This determines the “when” and “where” of your planning process. The operational plan details short-term product development plans, marketing tactics, and more urgent goals and projects that will be carried out throughout the course of the following year.
- The business plan tells us who is running the business, who the competition is, and who the customer is. On the other hand, a strategic plan tells us where the business will be in a few years, how you will expand the business, how will the market and industry will change over the years, how you will grow your market, etc.
- Your business plan so describes what you are doing at the moment. Your strategic plan outlines your long-term goals and how you want to get your company from its current state to where you want it to be in the future. The strategic plan enables you to see further into the future and outlines the important steps you must take to realize your vision.
- An operational plan looks at the short term, whereas strategic planning takes a long-term perspective and explains your overarching growth strategies. It provides specifics on what your company will do over the course of the next twelve months and when it will do it.
- An operational plan looks at the near term, but strategic planning takes a long-term perspective and discusses your overarching growth plans. It provides specifics on what your company will do over the course of the next twelve months and when it will do it.
So, this is how the plans differ from each other. Understanding the difference will help you in making accurate plans and grow your business.