By: David Sussman, CEO, PFP | The Family Security Plan®
Popular opinion vs. Directing Course
How many strategic thinkers are there? The goal for any organization is to develop as many as possible. Giving people a voice, a chance and a forum allows for you to see who is thinking strategically and who is thinking operationally. Getting opinions allow for new thinkers to emerge. However, consider this…
- • Too many opinions from non-strategic thinkers dilute the Strategic Plan and derail forward movement
- • Popular opinion is great as long as the consensus is far-thinking enough to be strategic.
Directing the course allows for a process of gaining buy-in on strategic initiatives that may be unpopular but are important to explore. If the course is predetermined, did you get buy-in and north-wind folks so they are thinking the same thing?
Many people who think of immediate issues can strategize about things needed in the current operations: what is working and what isn’t. However, they may not have the mindset to think into the future and see what is coming or what is happening globally.
Solving Existing Issues vs. Investing in Innovation
Short-term vision focuses on existing issues. Long-term vision focuses on long-range innovations. Every company needs to have both in their Strategic Plan.
Evolution is a requirement for sustainability.
Companies must evolve their operation as well as their overall organization through innovation.
Limit the number of initiatives
- • Too many initiatives will result in some key goals getting lost and the Strategic Plan lacking focus.
- • Too few initiatives will result in limited ideas, limited scope and limited movement. The chosen solutions may miss the mark and skip over something critical.
- • There must be both long-range initiatives and short-range initiatives.
Follow-up and Accountability
- • Someone needs to delineate the agreed-upon Strategic Plan and disseminate it immediately.
- • Carefully selected Drivers must be identified to implement each initiative in the plan.
- • Avoid selecting the same individuals as Drivers. Place a senior Mentor over each initiative and have a “rising star” drive it forward.
- • Each Mentor and Driver should identify a team to work on the initiative.
- • Monthly meetings will help to track and confirm movement, successes and issues.
- • Detailed presentations and updates should be provided quarterly.
Effective Strategic Planning is not an easy goal to achieve. The meeting is not typical, boring or gratuitous.