So…I have a M.B.A. from Kennesaw State University (go owls!) and one of the most commonly misunderstood terms, I think, by entrepreneurs is “strategy” and “tactics”. So let me break it down for you and assign you some homework this early Monday morning 🙂
“Strategy” is the long term planning and execution for a business goal. “Tactics” are short term objectives for a business goal. For example, my Firm’s “strategy” for becoming the premier business law firm in Georgia is to become known among those heavily involved in the business community as a leader in business legal services. However, our everyday tactics are to meet and connect with business partners for coffee once a week, host networking events once a quarter, and provide helpful information to our clients, partners and leaders on a weekly basis. Think of it as saying “I want McDonald’s for breakfast.” Your overall goal may be to get McDonald’s breakfast without paying for it. Your strategy to do this would be to have your spouse go with you and pay. However, your tactics would be to tell your spouse how much it would mean for them to go with you, prepare their clothes the night before and set the alarm and mysteriously forget to bring your purse. (It’s amazing how creative my mind works)
The reasons that it is SO important for businesses to know the difference between these terms is in the decision making process. Each day, as entrepreneurs, we make HUNDREDS of choices that affect our businesses–a lot of these choices decide tactics we will use to affect our overall goal. However, if we are making choices that don’t fall in line with our overall long-term strategy, our goals can become harder to achieve.
The Legal Life Lesson
For example, I had a client whose overall goal was to pay off the debt of a building. The strategy to do this was to cut costs, mostly costs from legal claims from employees or those on the property (By the way—do you have premises liability insurance?). When the client obtained a new employee, instead of having me review the employee contract, the client drafted their own. Additionally, when the new policy came in from the insurance company, instead of having me review it, they entered into this agreement with the insurance company with terms that were less than ideal and didn’t offer enough coverage. Short term tactics (daily decision making) like were OUT OF LINE with their strategy for cutting costs from legal claims. As you can imagine, that story didn’t end well six (6) months from that time. What can I say? I’m just a business attorney with an M.B.A.
“Call to Action”
Today, I invite each of you to:
1. Make a list of goals
2. Make a list of strategies (ways to obtain) those goals
3. Make a list of things to do short term (daily, weekly, monthly) that align with your strategy to achieve those goals
You’re WELL on your way towards success! Good luck!
**The “Legal Life Lessons” Series was started by Attorney Kendrick in 2012 as a way to showcase real life legal situations that either she has experienced or those within her networks have experienced. The goal is to move away from boring, white paper style discussions about the law and focus on creating comfortable conversations about real experiences in the life of Georgia business owners.**
DISCLAIMER: Kendrick Law Practice and its attorneys are ONLY authorized to practice law in Georgia and NO OTHER territory, state or country and therefore any and all legal advice is only applicable for businesses and individuals that reside and/or located in the State of Georgia. Additionally, please be advised that this communication does not create an attorney-client relationship unless there is a signed or electronically filed retainer agreement on file with the Firm.
Kendrick Law Practice, LLC – www.kendricklaw.net (practicing business law exclusively)
Keeping Georgia small businesses “IN business and OUT of Court”
P O Box 630, Lithonia, GA 30058 * (678) 739-8109
Mission Statement: To provide Georgia small businesses PASSION for and ACCESS to HIGHLY CUSTOMIZED and PERSONAL business advice AND legal counseling, including document drafting, document reviewing and negotiating services. View an audio presentation at http://www.slideshare.net/kendricklaw/why-klp-kendrick-law-practice or a video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3QFFIRk5ECw to answer “Why KLP?”.
Blogs at www.kendricklaw.wordpress.com
Slideshare at http://www.slideshare.net/kendricklaw
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