As a food truck owner, you probably have a business plan that states what you want your food truck businesses to accomplish, what threats you see, your financial projections, and how much money it will take to get you onto the streets of your local market. But have you created a roadmap of how to get there, or just the story of what “there” looks like?
I have had the privilege of helping many prospective and existing food truck owners on a daily basis since starting mobile-cuisine.com. In almost every case, the mobile vendors have a business plan, but very few have a roadmap of how to achieve their goals or to monitor their progress along the way. That’s what I call the ‘missing link’.
You need to create a one-page, actionable, post-able, and unforgettable strategic plan that your entire mobile food organization can rally around. This process will help you identify priorities, ensure alignment within your team, and commit to decisions long enough to judge results that move you towards your one, three, and five-year objectives.
Here is a brief outline for which priorities to include on your food truck business roadmap:
Create and enlist objectives
This list should drive pretty much every decision within your mobile food organization. It is important to set both long and short-range goals. Long-range priorities do not change often and include: core-values, risky goals and priorities in the three- to five-year range. Short-range priorities include critical quarterly ”bumps in the road” that must be accomplished to move your organization toward the defined one year and three- to five-year goals.
Track your progress
Making goals is one thing. You should also vocalize them and identify key performance metrics that should help you know if you’re on the right track. Be sure to communicate your progress on your short-range and long-range goals.
Schedule regular meetings to build rhythm and ensure accountability. I recommend holding a short meeting each day to gauge your team’s progress and to remedy any sticking points. At the weekly meeting, discuss “good news,” customer/employee feedback and review key performance metrics. Then, each quarter, take one to two days and review the past quarter vs. the plan. The goal of this meeting is to update the one-page plan, including any new three-month “bumps in the road” or bigger changes to your strategy.