5 Ways To Use Dual Strategies And Plans To Keep Every Piece In Play

Having a strategy not only helps coordinate your next action, but it also conceptualizes the result before it occurs


Life and business are both like a game of chess. They require identifying hurdles, evaluating options, organizing priorities, and deciding on execution.

Playing chess without planning or a strategy is reckless; the same applies to running a business without a blueprint, which would be disastrous. As a matter of fact, one strategy is seldom enough, but a seasoned businessperson knows the entire road map and all the possible routes.

Each strategy should have another one. Not only that, each plan should have a backup.

Play the Long Game

Having a strategy not only helps coordinate your next action, but it also conceptualizes the result before it occurs. Here are five simple rules that keep me in the hunt:

1. See the whole board. Your thinking should always include an assessment of your current situation and a definition of your business focus and strategic intent. Construct a clear vision of what results you want to achieve by objectives, a list of actions you’ll take to achieve your goals and an understanding of why you need regular analysis and occasional revisions of your strategy.

2. Allow for every possibility. One of the top reasons for failure is the lack of forward thinking. Every strategy requires constant analysis. If your business is succeeding, know why or what’s keeping it from doing so.

Examine your strengths and weaknesses. Review your company's vision and focus, then set your objectives, and determine the results you need to achieve. Remember to do regular reality checks and adjust accordingly.

3. Look beyond the move in front of you. Understand what could go wrong, and have a dual strategy in place should you ever need it. Analyze dangers before they occur so you will not be caught off guard.

Evaluate your market and study your competition. Plan for the worst case scenario, and always have a contingency plan in place. There is always more than one road to get to your destination, so know where you are.

4. Commit to the attack. Great plans fail because people lose focus or just simply lose interest. Don’t get distracted or waste resources on less important activities.

You know what you said the end goal is, so always stay focused on the overall long-term objective. Your second strategy is not another result, it's just another path to get to the same place.

5. Implement and execute. Stay on track, and push forward with determination, tenacity, and persistence. Maximize all your resources all the time.

Winning involves skillfully implementing the right move at the right time. But remember that it is not just a single strategy that usually wins, it’s the consistent follow-through of a good series of actions. For that, you need a good, well-executed plan.

Chess isn’t just the next move - it’s what you do three, four, even 10 steps after that really counts. Think of your business strategy in the same way. Have a strategy, but don’t hesitate to put a few different possibilities together, should that first idea fall through.

Seeing the whole board will keep you in the game and in a position to win in the end.

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