Business experts

Expert opinion: Be proactive – not reactive

Written by Rob Perks.

Rob PerksAs a business owner, where you are today and where you want to be in five years’ time will most likely be very different.

You may have a target to get from £2 million to £5 million turnover; your plan might be to increase your staff by a certain percentage; or you might want to break into a different market in the future, for example.

The problem for many business owners is that their businesses can become reactive rather than proactive. And it’s a very easy trait to fall into. If things are ticking along nicely then you can find yourself easing off slightly.

This might keep everyone happy, but in terms of getting to where you want to be, you may find yourself going around in circles.

Having a focussed business strategy and growth plan in place will not only set you on the right road to your ambitious target, it will also make your journey getting there as smooth as possible.

Developing a plan

Having the future in mind is crucial and gives focus to your goals and ambitions. You must begin with the end in mind and develop a clear vision of what you want to achieve in your business.


Across businesses of all sizes, 80 percent of strategic plans fail at the implementation stage, so a precise and successful implementation is vital.


A well thought out strategy will be based on a thorough market proposition. This means having a deep understanding of your market, what your customers want, a clear analysis of what your competitors offer and how you outperform them.


The people you start the business with may have been right then, but businesses change, and they may not be the best people to help you grow. Building a winning leadership team is essential for business growth.


Nobody is an expert at everything and admitting that and bringing in the right support to fill in any gaps you have is vital.

Rob Perks is the CEO of Inspire, a company dedicated to helping businesses in the South West maximise their success through business strategy, making the right connections and knowledge sharing. For more information on Inspire, visit