A company thrives when its leaders can articulate its vision, implement its strategy, and evaluate its performance. Planning strategically is essential to this process. IntelliBridge, a provider of intelligence services, reports that only 10% of organizations successfully implement and execute strategic planning, and 50% of leadership teams devote little to no time to it.
You will discover what strategic planning is, how it impacts an organization at every level, and how to create a strategic vision that is effective.
What is strategic planning?
Strategic planning is an ongoing, long-term organizational process that documents a company's intended direction based on available knowledge. It is used to prioritize efforts, allot resources, align stakeholders and employees on goals, and ensure that the data collected supports these objectives.
Strategic plans help projects and day-to-day tasks that contribute to the success of an organization as a whole.
How do our clients perceive us?
Where should the firm shine?
Where can we continue to improve and provide customers with value?
How do our investors perceive us?
WHO SHOULD HELP WITH STRATEGIC PLANNING?
Leaders and board members carry out strategic planning by tying it to the vision of their organization. As businesses strive to increase employee engagement, managers, individual contributors, and stakeholders all play crucial roles in decision-making.
This process is referred to as "Hoshin Kanri," which is a strategic deployment method that helps ensure that an organization's strategic goals drive its success. According to Business Strategy, "Hoshin" means "purpose" or "direction," and "Kanri" means "management" or "control."
Business Strategy quotes Oberholzer-Gee as saying, "The company's objective should be to promote widespread employee engagement, so management should communicate strategic objectives throughout the organization." By establishing short-term objectives within a longer-term framework, Hoshin Kanri enables businesses to tackle larger challenges in a feasible manner.
Stakeholders can influence operations, sales, and investment decisions, whereas managers can provide direction and guidance to direct reports. Every day, individual contributors work toward the company's goals and can offer different points of view, insights, and analyses on projects that are already underway.
Here is a more comprehensive overview of how various roles contribute to the business strategy of an organization.
Senior Leadership and Administration
When it comes to strategic planning, senior leaders and managers—such as the CEO, executive team, and board of directors—set the initial stages in motion by identifying their organization's vision and the guiding principles underlying its mission, ethos, and operational goals. Once objectives are defined, strategic priorities are established, and success is measured using key performance indicators (KPIs).
It is suggested that management teams evaluate their company's vision and guiding principles annually and revise them every five years. Also, they should review and change smaller goals and KPIs every year based on strategic priorities and how well they are doing.
In strategic planning and execution, employees at all levels play crucial roles. For example, department heads and managers may not be as involved in defining the company's vision, but they are responsible for establishing goals and KPIs that support it. To ensure team alignment, they must also communicate business strategies and track their success.
Individual contributors are also necessary for strategic planning. They assist their organisation in achieving its objectives by carrying out crucial daily operations. Frequently, they are tasked with developing action plans that, with their managers' guidance, are based on company milestones that directly support strategic planning objectives.
Individual contributors are uniquely positioned to provide feedback and data regarding the effectiveness of daily, monthly, and quarterly tactics. Therefore, managers should solicit their feedback and perspectives to inform future strategies and ensure that their employees feel empowered and valued.
Related: Seven Ways to Empower Your Staff
Strategic planning is important to stakeholders. They can be internal (such as customers, employees, and board members) or external (such as consultants) (such as stock owners, suppliers, vendors, and even governments or local communities).
To determine which stakeholders should be included in strategic planning, leaders must evaluate who has the greatest "investment" in the company's success, as well as the most influence and interest. For example, a CEO has a lot of interest and influence, but a department manager might have a lot of interest but not much influence.
During the strategic planning process, it is crucial to maintain open lines of communication with highly influential and involved stakeholders. Given that a business strategy must address the needs of stakeholders, company leaders must comprehend their objectives and choose the appropriate metrics and KPIs to measure past organizational achievements and forecast future performance. Consider this when evaluating short- and long-term gains for stakeholders.
Strategic planning is an organizational effort.
A company's success often depends on how well its leaders, employees, and other important people understand and carry out a strategic plan. Creating a culture of continuous improvement and customer value in an organization can be done by using a strategy that makes use of all positions.