In basic terms, strategic refers to the "what and why" and tactical refers to the "how."
Both methodologies are critical to your business success.
Strategic thinking, planning, and actions reflect your ability to take into account the big picture, to recognize patterns and trends, foresee issues, predict outcomes, and have smart "Plan B's" to fall back on.
Strategic issues deal with mission and purpose - why your business exists, how it makes a difference, and where it will be in the future.
Tactical refers to the hands-on part of getting the job done, making sure the strategic goals are met. Tactical procedures consist of performing tasks with quality and competence.
How are you currently balancing these two approaches in your business? Are you buried in details and day-to-day deadlines or are you able to focus your thinking and actions from a larger, deeper perspective?
Take a good look at almost any struggling home-based business owner and the first thing you'll discover is many of them work long hours. They get caught up in trying to be and do everything on their own and often find themselves on a treadmill that doesn't stop running.
Their dream of creating freedom and prosperity is quickly quashed when they assume all of the responsibilities required. Instead of focusing on building the business, they appoint themselves bookkeeper, salesperson, marketing expert, receptionist, customer service rep, cleaning staff, computer tech, etc.
Many struggling home-based business owners are operating at a "tactical" level instead of a "strategic" one and this is where overwhelm, frustration, stunted growth and eventual failure cultivate.
Many new entrepreneurs don't understand the importance of a strategic plan and the need to outsource, delegate, automate and discard certain activities that take them away from building the business.
If you feel like you're being buried by the details of day-to-day operations, the first step is to ask yourself, "Am I working "on" my business or "in" it?" Have you merely created another job for yourself? If you're focusing more on the "how", you've created a job for yourself by working tactically.
If you can honestly say you are focusing the majority of your attention on the bigger picture and from a larger perspective, and are focused more on the "what and why", you are operating strategically.
Again, both approaches are important, however, as the business owner, you want to focus your attention on building, designing, planning and acting in ways that support the BIG picture.
If you're stuck on how to proceed strategically and uncertain about how to leverage your time more efficiently, partner with a coach, mentor or trusted advisor to help you get clear on what you really want for your business so you can develop a success plan.
Running a profitable home-based business can be fun and easy once you learn how to leverage your time properly, function strategically, and by surrounding yourself with skilled people who are as committed to your success as you are.
Laurie Hayes, founder of The HBB Source, helps freedom seekers fast track their journey from employee to home-based entrepreneur. A featured author in numerous publications on the topics of personal growth and home business, Laurie is also a contributing author to 101 Great Ways to Improve Your Life, Volume 3. Pick-up her free e-zine jam packed with helpful resources at http://www.thehbbsource.com and The Complete 12-Step Guide To Starting A Home-Based Business at http://www.startahomebusinessguide.com