Thought Leadership

Strategy vs. Tactic: What’s the Difference?

A guest post by Julie Keyes

We’re moving through the third quarter of 2017 and soon it will be time to plan for 2018. Now is an excellent time to review the year so far and look at your metrics or Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) to see how well you’ve done against your strategic plan. If you don’t have a strategic plan, then set a goal to create one before the end of the year.  It’s your road map to growing and improving your company. A Value Growth Advisor can help create and implement a good working plan that could make all the difference for you and your business.

I often get asked, “How are strategies and tactics different?” It’s a good question.

If you have a goal of driving sales revenue by 20% next year, you’re going to need a few new strategies. One could be to revamp your marketing plan. The tactics within the strategy are the steps and tasks that ‘live out’ the strategy. Some of those tactics could be to increase your social media presence, do more blogging, host a large-scale event for prospective customers, or get more involved in trade associations as an advisor in your areas of expertise.  These can help drive revenue, if done right and consistently. Some have a longer return on your investment, so have patience. It’s important to remember that there are only two ways to drive revenue in a business and they are through sales and marketing, so make sure you are strong in both these areas.

Another strategy could be to enhance your company culture. Some tactics to accomplish this could be to host an offsite team building workshop, conduct regular staff meetings with interactive participation, and share your company’s vision and values on a regular basis with your staff. Some of my clients go so far as to post their values or mission statement in a prominent place conveying it to employees and customers who pass by. Positive, subliminal messages like this can impact the way people think and act.

Whatever your goals are for the rest of the year, make sure your strategies align with them and determine what tactics are necessary to live out these strategies.  It’s normal for companies to continue many of the same strategies into the new year if they’re still relevant and moving the company forward.  If you find yourself behind on what you planned to get done, get the team together, review and revise your plan, and engage them to end the year on a high note. There’s still time and it’s worth every effort.

Julie Keyes is a Certified Exit Planning Adviser and Value Growth Adviser. She works with business owners who are planning to transition from their companies, was awarded the EPI 2017 Leader of the Year and is president of the Exit Planning Institute Twin Cities Metro Area Chapter.