Our 7-step strategic planning process is one of the few services that we offer the old fashioned way - by digging in deep along side your team, usually at an off-site location, where we facilitate a process to craft a comprehensive strategic plan for your business.
Bringing in an experienced, outside facilitator to walk the team through a comprehensive strategic planning and development process can have some distinct advantages:
1) Objectivity. An outside facilitator will have an objective, unbiased and fresh view of your business. This is especially important in resolving any problems as they arise and when addressing complex, multi-stakeholder issues.
2) Full participation. Using an outside facilitator allows all members of the strategy team to participate fully in the process. Facilitating and participating simultaneously is awkward and difficult. This is especially true when the process is facilitated by the CEO or another senior executive, as the rest of the team may feel their voice is not being heard, or they may hold back or reserve their opinions for fear of reprisal. An outside facilitator levels the playing field.
3) Efficiency. A good facilitator can keep the process moving, ensuring that the expected outcome is delivered within the agreed upon time frame. It takes a lot of time to prepare for, facilitate and compile the final plan. Using an outside facilitator allows key team members to continue in their day to day responsibilities.
4) Best practices. Using an outside facilitator will ensure that your team incorporates many of the latest and best practices for your plan development. Using the right tools to build you plan so that it can acted upon systematically through-out the organization is critical. We use tried, true and tested methodologies such Kaplan and Norton's Balanced Scorecard and Strategy Maps, among others.
Step 1. Situation Analysis. We review the external and internal factors that are the basis for your business model, market focus and target customers.
Step 2. Vision, mission and values. We help you develop or refine your vision, core values and core purpose.
Step 3. Strategic Options. We help you formulate your major generic and specific strategic goals to consider.
Step 4. Set Strategic imperatives. Establish team consensus on top strategic priorities to focus on over short and long term.
Step 5. Build Strategy Map. Decide on key/initial strategic objectives across financial, customer, internal processes and development perspectives and the inter-relationship of each through a cause and effect analysis.
Step 6. Build Balanced Scorecard. Build specific strategic objectives, decide how they will measured, what their targets should be and the specific initiatives that will need to be implemented to meet your objectives.
Step 7. Prepare business plan. Finally we help your senior team build out the full business plan. We sort the strategic objectives by department, business unit, and/or functional area (operations, HR, admin, sales, marketing, finance etc.
We help your team decide on how to resource the plan and incorporate into your operating budget(s), your capital expenditure plan, and your cash flow projections.
According to Chris Zook, best selling business author and partner at Bain and Company, more than two-thirds of businesses fail to effectively deliver on their strategic plan. All too often, the strategic plan sits on a bookshelf, full of great ideas and initiatives: many of which never happen. The failure is not usually in the plan design and development. It usually lies its ineffective execution.
In order to really move the needle, the strategy needs to come alive within the entire organization, through an intense focus on key strategic priorities, in which progress is measured objectively, accurately and regularly. As such, successful businesses need an effective strategy management system that is clearly embedded, documented, articulated, understood and acted upon consistently and continually throughout the organization.
Almost 20 years ago, Dr. Robert Kaplan and Dr. David Norton authored "The Balanced Scorecard - Translating Strategy into Action". Since then, literally thousands of businesses around the world have incorporated their methodologies into their strategy management processes. They followed up a few years later with "Strategy Maps" which is a dynamic visual tool used to describe and communicate your strategy.
Balanced Scorecards and Strategy Maps help companies align their business activities to their vision and their strategic goals, help clarify and communicate the business strategy within the organization and to outside stakeholders, and monitor performance against its strategic goals.
Bosveld and Associates have formed a strategic alliance with ESM Software Group, Inc., and combined our Management Consulting services with their ESM+Strategy hosted software suite, to help organizations solve their most pressing strategy execution challenges. ESM+Strategy is the only application built and managed by the co-creators of the Balanced Scorecard and Strategy Maps.
As a cloud based, software as a service offering, management can monitor business progress towards its strategic goals on a real time basis. As measurement data for each strategic objective is imported and updated, the system graphically displays key trends, and provides visual indicators as milestones are reached or when objectives are below, above or at target levels. Managers can roll up data to report or drill down to explore what may be impeding progress towards specific objectives.
The software also provides users guided development of Strategy Maps and Balanced Scorecards with online resources and a deep library of best practices and example KPI (Key Performance Indicators), targets, measures and initiatives.
It also has organizational alignment capabilities to cascade specific goals from corporate down to business unit, department or division, and down to personal or individual scorecards.
Administrators can set up reminders for data input, assign tasks, and generate robust, data rich reports for regular strategy review meetings
...plus much, much more.
The best way to see how ESM+Strategy can help you execute your strategic plan is to request a demo. Please give us a call at 226-777-3078 and we will set it up.
For our ESM+Strategy clients, we offer a regular strategy coaching consultation service.
Normally these coaching sessions coincide with your regular strategy review meetings, that are held monthly or quarterly. We help CEO's become the organization's Chief Strategy Officer by objectively reviewing your execution progress towards your strategic goals. We coach your team to become the leading strategy-focused business in your marketplace.
We know that ESM+Strategy can be the tool that transforms your business into a strategy focused organization poised for breakthrough performance.