Strategy Development for Organizational Success
A strategy is an overall approach, based on an understanding of the broader context in which you function, your own strengths and limitations, and the objective you are attempting to address.
A strategy gives you a framework within which to work, clarifies what you are trying to achieve and the approach you intend to use.
It does not spell out specific activities.
What is strategic planning?
A strategy is an overall approach and plan. So, strategic planning is the overall planning that facilitates the good management of a process. Strategic planning takes you outside the day-to-day activities of your organization or project. It provides you with the big picture of what you are doing and where you are going. Strategic planning gives you clarity about what you actually want to achieve and how to go about achieving it, rather than a plan of action for day-to-day operations.
Strategic planning enables you to answer the following questions:
Who are we?
What capacity do we have/what can we do?
What problems are we addressing?
What opportunities are we addressing?
What difference do we want to make?
Which critical issues must we respond to?
Where should we allocate our resources? What should our priorities be?
Only once these questions are answered, it is possible to answer the following:
What should our immediate objective be?
How should we organize ourselves to achieve this objective?
Who will do what, when?
A strategic plan is not rigid. It simply gives you parameters within which to work.
Base your strategic planning process on a real understanding of the external environment.
Determine the organizations own capacity, strengths, limitations and objectives.
A critical review of past performance by the owners and management of a business and the preparation of a plan beyond normal budgetary horizons require a certain attitude of mind and predisposition.
Some essential points which should be observed during the review and planning process include the following:
Relate to the medium term i.e. 2/4 years
Be undertaken by owners/key managers/directors
Focus on matters of strategic importance
Be realistic, detached and critical
Distinguish between cause and effect
Be reviewed periodically
In developing a strategic plan, it is desirable to clearly identify the current status, objectives and strategies of the existing organization. This leads to specific strategy development covering the following issues:
Develop a realistic Vision for the organization. What is the core purpose, ideology and a vivid description of the organization now and looking forward.
The nature of an organization is often expressed in terms of its Mission which describes the fulfillment of the vision. The statement indicates what the organization is about, why it exists, and what it wants to achieve.
Address the Values governing the operation of the organization and its conduct or relationships with society at large, members, customers, suppliers, employees, local community and other partners.
An important key element is too state the organization's Objectives in terms of the results it needs/wants to achieve in the medium/long term. Objectives should relate to the expectations and requirements of all the major stakeholders, including employees, and should reflect the underlying reasons for running the organization.
Goals are specific interim or ultimate time-based measurements to be achieved by implementing strategies in pursuit of the organization’s objectives, for example, to achieve a membership of 150 businesses in three years time. Goals should be quantifiable, consistent, realistic and achievable.
Next are the Strategies - the rules and guidelines by which the mission, objectives, goals, etc. will be achieved.
The final elements are the Programs which set out the implementation plans for the key strategies. These should cover resources, objectives, time-scales, deadlines, budgets and performance targets.
Winston C.Trumpet & Associates, LLC are Certified Strategic Mindset® Facilitators skilled in guiding a strategic planning process:
There is a designated person to keep order, to prevent issues from being personalized, and to keep the process on track without becoming emotionally involved.
Everyone else is freed up to get involved in the process without worrying too much about process issues.
A skilled facilitator is available to deal with conflict that may arise so that it is handled constructively rather than destructively