I was talking with Tim Berry, the founder and chairman of Palo Alto Software, this week on Talk Business With Howard radio which airs every Wednesday at 11 AM on Blog Talk Radio. Tim and I discussed business plans, business planning and leadership.
I consider Tim to be the entrepreneur’s entrepreneur. Pamela Slim, the author of the best-selling book, Escape from Cubicle Nation, was right when she called Tim, “the Obi-wan Kenobe of business planning“.
Tim shares a great analogy about how to think about business plans.
A business plan is much like the steering column on your car. You have to steer the car in order to go somewhere. The car doesn’t arrive at its desired destination by itself. As the driver, you need to have a route in mind. As you put the key in the ignition and begin your journey, you need to constantly be aware of the weather, the traffic or anything that may suddenly come into the path of your vehicle such as a tree in the road.
When the unexpected happens on the road as the driver, just like your role as CEO, president or business owner, you must make constant course corrections along the way. A business plan isn’t any different, whether it’s a long trip across the country or a short trip across town, you must constantly make course corrections to get there – much like how you manage your business, day in and day out, for success.
Tim went on to say that a written business plan is about “what should happen in your business” so you can better manage or steer your business in the right direction.
If you follow Tim’s advice about business plans and business planning, you will drive your business toward significant, profitable improvements.
Listen to the show for more of Tim Berry’s business wisdom.