Many organizations and business schools still start with a SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) when they begin their annual strategic planning. The problem with this is that they are only looking at today's issues and solving them today. And not really addressing the issues of the future.
Planning needs to start with the future the organization is headed towards, and work backwards from there, including a critical evaluation of the FUTURE external environment. Identifying the future trends you're facing, produces opportunities and threats that need to be addressed today. We take you through a new way to plan that starts with the future desired outcomes and works backwards to identify the strategic actions needed to achieve those future results. Then we show you some tools to use as you implement your plan so you can manage your business more strategically.
Once the strategic plan is done, it's time to focus on the business unit operational plans. This is the time for budgeting. Unfortunately, many organizations start with budgeting and try to shoehorn their strategies and actions into the budget. This doesn't provide room for creative decision-making and opportunities that may need to be addressed but aren't in the budget. In a holistic approach, the operational plan or plans are created after the strategic plan is done so each department understands what actions they need to take to support the overall strategic plan. This is critical to ensuring that everyone in the organization is focused on the same strategic initiatives.
When changes are made, whether large scale or small, they impact the emotions and actions of your staff, kicking off a roller coaster of emotions. Understanding how to coach them through these ups and downs to the desired end results takes skill and training. We will help you do this.
Our approach is founded on the belief that... "people support what they help create".
Consequently, we consider You, our client, to be the subject matter expert in your business.
Our job is to extract the information from you in an environment conducive to sharing and open communication to arrive at a consensus for decision-making. Including all key stakeholders in the original planning process is critical to ensuring that everyone is on board with the strategic direction. Once this initial plan is created by the senior leadership team, it's time to take it to the rest of the organization for their feedback and input about how the plan can be executed. Depending on your organization's size, this may go through several iterations as you gain feedback from all levels and make changes until a plan is finalized. Then the implementation and tracking starts with everyone contributing their part to ensuring the future outcomes are met on time and according to the plan. We show clients how to build in touchpoints to monitor and adjust for external changes that might impact the plan.
The result is a cohesive plan or action plan or problem resolution where everyone agrees to the outcomes and understands their role in the solution, as well as timelines to accomplish tasks.
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