Developing strategy, goals and a plan for 2018 will take time and resources. It requires the time and commitment of some of the most highly paid and highly experienced people in your company. So, if your team isn’t willing to invest what is needed, I recommend that you don’t do it. Poor planning is often worse than no planning at all.
So, why do you need a strategy? Why take time for planning? There are many reasons, but let me focus on 5:
1) To set direction and priorities
Firstly, you need a strategy because it sets the direction and establishes priorities for your company. It defines your company’s view of success and prioritises the activities that will make this view your reality. The strategy will help your people know what they should be working on, and what they should be working on first.
Without a clearly defined and articulated strategy, you may find that your priority initiatives or ‘big rocks’—the ones that will drive the highest success – are not getting the focus they need.
2) To get everyone on the same page
If you find that you have departments working to achieve different aims, or going in different directions, you need a strategy.
Once you define your strategic direction, you can get operations, sales, marketing, finance, manufacturing, and all other departments moving together to achieve the company’s goals.
3) To simplify decision-making
If your leadership team has trouble saying no to new ideas or potential initiatives, you need a strategy. Why? Your strategy will have already prioritised the activities necessary for success. Priorities make it easier to say no to distracting initiatives.
4) To create alignment
Many companies have hard working individuals putting their best efforts into areas that have little to no effect on strategic success. They’re essentially majoring in the minors—because their activities aren’t aligned with the priorities. Your strategy serves as the vehicle for answering the question, “How can we better align all our resources to maximise our strategic success?”
5) To communicate the message
Many leaders walk around with a virtual strategy locked in their heads—they know where their company needs to be and the key activities that will get it there. Unfortunately, the strategy isn’t down on paper and hasn’t been communicated thoroughly. As a result, few people are acting on it.
When your team, suppliers, and even customers know where you’re going, you allow even greater opportunities for people to help you maximise your success in getting there.
Once you recognise the need to plan, you now have the role of becoming the catalyst: for facilitating the buy in and commitment of your leadership team and the rest of your company. Check out the High Growth Planning workshop to see how we can help you create a winning strategy for 2018