At some point leaders within companies, associations, and entrepreneurs have engaged in some sort of strategic planning.
Here are some problems with strategic planning.
Many ideas are thrown up on a wall, agreed upon, and then go back to business as usual.
There is no accountability to make sure who does what, how often, and when. Ideas are free. Execution is priceless.
Can you remember your last team meeting that ended on a positive note because of all the great ideas but nothing was really accomplished?
That’s what most strategic thinking is like until the executive team choose a clear driving force, structure themselves to be strategically agile, innovate on business process, and are consciously aware to take action or not.
The two words “strategic” and “planning” in of themselves are contradictory.
What I mean by that is in order to be strategic you have to envision your company as what you want to become, what you want to be known for, and how the customer sees you.
Planning is the series of steps to help you get there.
So when you develop a plan you essentially are starting with the beginning in mind and attempt to fix existing problems rather than establish a new direction for the organization.
Mission statements, vision statements, and rah rah language don’t really mean anything.
Customers trust actions, not lip service. Employees trust how leadership engages on the field, not from the press booth. A lot of time and money can be wasted on creating the ultimate statement that says “who you are” but if that vision isn’t ingrained into the actions from the executive floor to the one managing the door then all bets are off.
Instead focus on”Strategic Altering “
as taking an existing plan and shifting it from activity driven to results driven.
Your vision for the company could be solid but fail because it chose the wrong tactics, poor execution, and no accountability. The TEA method explains out how to decrease the decision making time to arrive at a comprehensive plan.
In order to fully embrace “Strategic Altering” understand there are 5 characteristics to making the shift.
Marshall Goldsmith’s book, What Got You Here Won’t Get You There says it all. Forget about past accomplishments, current operations, and upcoming events. They are only of minor concern in terms of what the future will look like. This is the hardest thing to do with recycled leadership which is why searching for new perspectives from prospective high energy leaders is so critical to the future.
Charles Kepner and BenTregoe’s book Top Management Strategy discusses how driving force is one of the most critical elements in developing organizational strategy. Associations may label their driving force members serviced, products and services offered, or production capability. The challenge is picking the top driving force and having alignment with all of the departments to agree and create an action plan around it.
In a 2011 Forbes article by Holly Green, Shifting from Strategic Planning to Strategic Agility, she suggests to ask the right questions, test new critical thinking skills, and develop a clear vision. Some organizations already have a plan in place that serves them however the plan might need some tweaking to become more agile and/or results driven.
A homeowner might move their furniture around every couple years because they might discover more open space, better utility of how to the space, or because of the refreshed feeling one gets by their surroundings looking new. Organizations need to look for new ways how they might rearrange their departments, operations, and innovate to become better fit to serve the market.
Awareness of alcohol abuse is the first step with coping with alcoholism. If you ignore the problem over time it manifests in other areas of your life that at some point become unmanageable without professional help. We must be aware of our own conflicts in our surroundings and if we have the ability to solve them ourselves or have the courage to ask for professional help when we need it most.
See the 30 Day Strategic Altering Execution Plan here.
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