When starting a business, most people start with a plan. Some don’t. Some start with an idea and they go wherever the wind blows them. The best approach for us, and for most people, is somewhere between those two extremes. You can be a really rigid “planaholic” or you can be completely flexible with no direction or purpose at all. Sometimes one or the other can work. Most of the time those extremes don’t work out in the long run. The planaholic misses opportunities because they are too busy planning and not acting. The freewheeler misses opportunities because they are unorganized and come off as unprofessional. Personally, I am a planaholic. I plan every detail of most of the things I do. I take a step by step approach to everything. I think the best way to accomplish anything is to make a plan and stick to it, as long as the plan is accomplishing its goals. This has helped us stay ahead of the things we need to be prepared for and it helps to create the perception that we are professional and know what we are doing. Even when we don’t have a clue. Not everyone in our group takes this approach.
Some of us are freewheelers and like the pressure of flying by the seats of our pants. That approach can also work when applied appropriately. Those who can take an idea and just run with it, often times create a lot of buzz and publicity, especially with the prevalence of Facebook, Instagram and other social media platforms. It’s a great way to get your company or products on people’s minds. The down fall to this approach is that if you do no planning at all after creating a huge buzz you won’t be able to handle the demand. That leads people to assume you are unprofessional and unorganized.
I think successfully creating a new business requires a little bit of both strategies. This is why our group works so well together. We have planaholics, freewheelers, and everything on the spectrum between those two extremes. We have people creating buzz and those working in the background preparing for the day that it blows up. Eventually both strategies will be rewarded.