Hard to believe, but we are almost halfway through 2018. If your company came into the new year with a strategic plan, it’s time to evaluate how you are doing. If the idea of doing strategic planning sounds good but you could use some guidance, give me a call. I’ve helped hundreds of companies create and execute on their plans, both in Cincinnati and all over America.
Companies, divisions and not-for-profits alike all benefit from having an official strategic plan. That’s because it’s a document that spells out the most important goals for the coming year. Why is that important? Because organizations that are crystal clear on their objectives are far more likely to achieve them.
Of course, knowing what you want to accomplish is just the start. From there you need to identify the individual steps required to get to make it all happen. And list who is responsible for doing it. By when.
Ideally, you should be monitoring your progress monthly or at least quarterly. Get a report from each manager on how they are doing vs. plan. “Coming along well” or “making progress” are not specific enough. If you built a solid strategic plan, it contains quantifiable milestones. Require the reports to show actual vs. plan based on the most current and accurate data you have.
As you approach the midpoint on the calendar, you should expect to see considerable progress toward the goals. If you are ahead of plan in an area, congratulate the team. Positive reinforcement goes a long way.
If, however, you are behind in some areas, now’s the time to dig into the details. Talk with the manager who owns the results, meet with the team working toward the goals and find out what the real issues are. You still have time to make adjustments and accomplish your objectives. But you need to act.
In working on hundreds of strategic plans, I’ve learned a few things. How to prepare for the planning session. How to get input that leads to better goals. How to write a plan that’s clear, actionable and holds people accountable. And, most importantly, how to make sure a plan gets implemented. If you would like to improve your strategic planning and implementation process in Cincinnati or anywhere in America, please give me a call.