If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there.
In the hyper-competitive startup world where 90% of companies fail, there’s a constant pressure to execute.
Startups are racing to achieve the next milestone, the next customer, the next round of funding. They’re focused on the current state of their business, and what it takes to meet the needs of today. In this environment of “get it done”, it’s easy to overlook one of the key important but not urgent activities that is necessary in order to sustain long term growth: the creation and maintenance of a strategic plan.
At the highest level, a strategic plan consists of:
Although the payoffs are typically realized in the longer term, there are many benefits that come from having a strategic plan:
If communicated properly, a strategic plan lets everyone in your organization what your goals are, and what each individual in the organization can do to further those goals. By cascading top level objectives to team and individual metrics, everyone in the organization feels a part of driving the strategy.
If done inclusively, input into the strategic plan is gathered at all levels of the organization and provides for a feeling of contribution by every team member. This provides for a feeling of “shared ownership” for the company’s strategy, and better employee engagement in executing it.
By establishing what’s important for your organization and creating the associated metrics to measure progress against goals, evaluation of individual and team success becomes much more clear and objective.
Although an important role of the leadership team is decision making, it’s critical that the entire organization is empowered to execute their functional strategies, and aligned in their decision making processes. A strategic plan can help guide autonomous decision making by providing clarity as to the organization’s goals, objectives, and values.
A good strategic plan should set the direction for the company over the next 3+ years, and should be cascaded to operational plans that span the upcoming year. A governance process for evaluating progress against operational plans should happen at least quarterly, to ensure that you can make the fine tuning adjustments necessary as your business evolves.
At TurnPage Consulting, we use a 5 step process to help our clients develop and implement their strategic plans. Although there are a variety of alternatives that can be used to create a strategic plan, the first and most important step is an organizational commitment to having one.
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Why poor planning for your product launch will always come back
Cross-functional initiatives often represent a high level of
If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will
Deliberately allocating time to the right activities can make
Scale is an important aspect of any growing business, but it