Strategic Plan and Strategic Vision

by ryan

Strategic Plan and Strategic Vision


What is Your Strategic Plan for Your Life?

A practical, realistic and well thought out strategic plan is the lifeblood of any organization; whether your organization is a for–profit organization pursuing business goals , or a non-profit organization, it does not matter.

A strategic plan requires creative visualization , which needs to align and agree with your organization’s overall mission statement and purpose.

In my 10 years plus of working both with private industry and the non-profit sector in strategic planning (about me), I am always amazed how many times an organization’s mission statement and vision will not agree and align with the overall direction, and strategic planning of the organization.

Your strategic plan should set out for your organization, your overall organizational vision, and strategy in achieving smart goals and a methodology in achieving these goals and benchmarks.

Six Steps for Strategic Planning in How to Succeed

1) Your organizational mission statement must align and agree with your strategic vision and your strategic plan and direction. This is problem reality with many non-profits, especially new organizations just starting out in business world.

An organization’s strategic plan and strategic mission may change and evolve over time. Your strategic plan and strategic vision 10 years ago may not be the same today. This is why it is so vitally important that your overall mission and vision for your organization be the driving force behind the strategic planning process to ensure your strategic plan and organization mission and vision statement align.

2) Make sure you develop both a short term and long term strategic plan. This may sound rather self-explanatory, but the problem that many organizations face in their strategic plan is focusing on the long term setting goals objectives without looking at the short term process in getting there.

As an example, you may want to increase your global market presence by 35% during the next 3-5 years, and if your raw data and accounting analysis support this percentage, fine. You’ve got a 5 year window, a smart goals plan and timeline, but what about the short term strategic plan so you can achieve your long term strategic plan objectives?

• What are the interim/short-term processes you need to examine, evaluate and implement so you are on target?

•What additional personnel/capital improvements do you need to consider in realizing your objectives?

•How will reaching an increased 35% global market share effect and impact your bottom line especially in a down-turn global economy?

3) A successful strategic plan can only be successful by involving not only upper management but also regular Key employee staff as well. If you want to know how to succeed and gain support, involve all personnel in the decision making process.

I have helped to facilitate strategic planning for non-profits, and I know you can gain more support and buy-in involving all employees then just the assumed upper management level staff. All staff need to be empowered and have buy-in. Although the decision ultimately rests with upper management or the CEO-the voices, concerns, suggestions, and input from all staff should be considered and weighed accordingly regarding any strategic planning agenda. Remember, your greatest asset is your staff .

4) What is the short/term cost benefit analysis? This is huge, many organizations decide upon a course of strategic planning without crunching the numbers and conducting a feasibility study to determine if the strategic planning is even a viable option.

You need to ask the hard questions. For every action-there is a reaction (good, bad or indifferent). You have to sit down with your board of directors (if you have a board), and your financial department of your organization and crunch the numbers to determine whether it is even feasible.

• What is the short term and long term financial impact?

• Have you calculated your risk tolerance?

• How will the strategic planning affect your organization’s long term growth and impact?

5) What is the motive behind your strategic plan and long term strategic vision? Every organization wants to prosper and to possess the tools in how to succeed, but you need to ask yourself what is driving your strategic plan process? What I mean is-you need to understand and know what are your motives behind the strategic plan and strategic vision you are considering? Is it economic survival for your company or your organization or is it corporate greed? There is a difference.

I believe every corporate CEO and manager needs to ask themselves this question. There is nothing wrong with capitalism, I fully embrace capitalism where it freely exists, corporate competition and technological innovation is a healthy part of the economic machine that drives economies of scale in the global market which we are all apart.

The exchange of goods and services between consumers and businesses is the very fabric that drives the global economy which is good. The problem I have is if your strategic planning is greed motivated for the sake of being number one at everyone’s expense.

I think the problem any organization should be aware of regarding healthy business economic growth that is founded on honesty and integrity is-suddenly replaced by a world mindset which embraces corporate greed and selfish self serving interests .

There is a great little verse in the bible, 1 Timothy 6:10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. I think this is an important lesson not only from an individual point of view-but from a business perspective as well.

6) Ensure you have the capital/human resources in your strategic planning.

Many organizations will embark down the road in their strategic vision, only to realize too late, that they neither possess the capital nor the human resources (personnel) in seeing through their long term objectives.

Make sure you plan accordingly, because if you Fail to Plan-You Plan to Fail.

Assess, analyze and review everything before you begin, otherwise you’re just setting yourself up for many failures along the way…

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