Free Resources for your Business

These resources are FREE to use for your business. They are designed as way for you to take stock, and yes, answer the hard questions! Have a look at the description of each one. and decide where might be the best place to start for your business. Click on the link and download the worksheet for your own use. If you need further assistance, please do contact me on cathy@cathywinston.ie

Cathy Winston


MARKET FOCUSED BUSINESS PLANNING WORKSHEET

This is the master plan sheet that we work through with companies using breakthrough clinic conversations, running workshops and through market research with key customer groups, influencers, industry leaders and suppliers. It is an audit of your business environment while gathering new intelligence for your market so you can confidently manage the now and stand in the future at the same time. You can take the time with your management team to answer the big questions.

Download here: Market Focus Business Planning Worksheet


HIGH LEVEL BUSINESS STRATEGY WORKSHEET

Strategy is an unnerving word for many but it effectively means “ what does it take to win” in your market. There are two sides to winning, producing goods and services that the market place values that you can make a profit from. The other is managing a business that you are passionate about.

This worksheet asks you to think about your destination 3-5 years out and to consider what success would look like. I recommend to companies that they ignore all restrictions when they consider this. They should think like a start-up. Then consider your reason to exist as a business. You need to think about this without thinking about the financial gain as the money follows when you are providing something valuable.

So you are now in the departure lounge, what are the main thrusts or chunks of work that will be needed to get you to your destination? These are the projects that you need to put into place to achieve success.

Download here: High Level Business Strategy Worksheet


IMPROVE YOUR CUSTOMER SERVICE JOURNEY

If you have a service then this is an excellent exercise to work on. Get your team together and get post-it’s and a blank wall. Plot all the steps that are in the service for the customer both internal and external. The different stages on this worksheet are there to prompt you. When all the steps are listed then look at the moments of truth for your customer, that is the points that delight or disappoint the customer. Now consider your performance on these and way you can make it better and how you can make your value visible.

Download here: Improve Your Customer Service Journey


THE BUSINESS BATTLECARD CANVAS WORKSHEET

This is adapted from Paul O’Dea’s (CEO, Selectstrategies.com) Battlecard. This worksheet does what it says on the tin. First step is to list out all the customer groups/segments. A segment is a like group. They share a number of things in common. It could be demographic or geographic. It could be size of company or sector they are in or stage of business development or even export/ import.

Once you list your customer groups, now it is possible to rank them by impact or profitability on the business. This exercise is about doing a deep dive in understanding what is your business does for them from their perspective. It is likely you will find it difficult to answer some of the questions from the customer perspective so you may need to ask some of your customers through market research so you can capture your product or service in a compelling way.

You now know the value you provide your customers so capturing your communications or story to market your company in a more relevant and motivating way should become clear.

Download here: The Business Battlecard Canvas Worksheet


PROJECT PLANNING WORKSHEET

Implementing new projects or plans is the biggest sticking point for companies. They have the capacity to come up with good new thinking but they fail to implement for a range of reasons – the predominant one being it requires something to change. Resistance to change is deep in most cultures and causes companies to stay stuck in the past or in operations instead of being flexible or agile enough to adapt to the changes business environment.

If you completed the High-level business strategy worksheet, (see above) you should have the projects identified to bring the business forward with confidence. This worksheets is asking you to flesh out the projects into mini-business plans, by answering the questions in the column at the side.

Download here: Project Planning Worksheet


BUSINESS PLANNING WHEEL WORKSHEET

This is a useful coaching tool that asks you to:

  1. Put all the important areas of the project or business on the edge of the wheel
  2. Put 0 in the middle and 10 at the edge of the circle, where 0 is very poor and 10 is working extremely well
  3. For each area think about what best practice would look like/feel like/be like
  4. Mark on the spoke where you think the business or project is now
  5. Map out the 5/6 steps you need to complete to close the Gap

Examples for start-up businesses might be:

  • Product prototype
  • Testing with customers
  • Customer acquisition
  • Sales and marketing
  • Skills needed
  • Finance/funding

The team asks themselves what best practice would look like for the company or what success would look like. This is 10. The then score the business area on the spoke for where they see themselves now and discuss the critical steps to close the gap.

This ensures they do not get all consumed with one aspect of the business at the expense of the others. An idea or a product is not actually a business, so this approach ensures the company behaves like a business.

Download here: Business Planning Wheel Worksheet


If you would like further help with your business, see the services sections for further information:

Or contact us on cathy@cathywinston.ie