The Start-Up Drive : Startups need planning.

Creating a high level overview of your goals with details on process and goals can make a huge difference in how you grow your start-up. It will become useful for investors, business development, communication and growth. It doesn't take long and the more often you do it, the easier it gets. Samples to come...
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The Start-Up DriveThe Start-Up Drive Ep 3 : Agile and Lean does not mean we won't document plans.

In today's daily drive I've been thinking about the best way to document your plans. I'm not talking about writing a 1000 page document, Gantt charts, deliverables and projections. I'm talking about a monthly or quarterly overview of key objectives. Doing this will achieve a few goals for an up and coming company that has limited resources:

  1. Keep focus on your goals over that time period.
  2. Allow for non-tech types to understand what you're doing.
  3. Build up a library of documentation for potential investors.
  4. Create a roadmap for business goal and KPI (Key Performance Indicator) definition and refinement.
  5. Help to focus your efforts and build up definable metrics that can be used to one day forecast revenues and plans.
  6. Build a "machine" and process for actually delivering on high level things like content strategy, offers, communication schedules (email, social media), and pricing offers.

I start with either a Visio or Omnigraffle document and every 30 days or so iterate a new set of two pages. It's close to a mind map but leans more towards a process flow and goal illustration.

The nice thing about this is it keeps things understandable, it's a quick read, it doesn't take days to put together and lastly (and probably most importantly) it helps to document your journey in the chaos and speed of growing business.

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