When building a business plan for your startup, you will begin to ask yourself several questions like: who is on the team, what are you building, what is the potential market, or how much investment will be required?

However, I think the most important question to ask is: Why?

Most new companies will initially form around a new product idea; this is natural. 

With a brilliant idea in hand, it often doesn’t seem necessary to take a step back and think about “why.” In fact, many would argue if you already have an excellent plan, do you really need a high-level strategy?

Yes!

Even if you think you have it all figured out, I encourage you to take the time to understand why your company exists – what is your overarching reason for being?

The reason is simple. It’s because your initial plan will probably be wrong and you will need to modify, pivot and maybe even reset your plan. Understanding “why” is critical in determining both when and how to change.

When thinking of the “why,” visualize it as your company’s mission and the direction it will take you.  As you shape and grow your company, constructing the understanding of “why” can be transformational. 

Employees that recognize not just what you want to build, but why you are building it, will be able make better trade-offs, react faster to external shifts, and have an overall improved agility.

Conversely, if you have a comprehensive product plan, but the team lacks a common understanding of the mission, you risk the team failing to be able to make the right trade-offs and decisions.

It’s a crucial first step to take the time and ask yourself “why” and be able to understand your company’s mission; the value to this knowledge is instrumental.

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