A Goal Driven Strategic Plan

If you have ever planned a vacation or a trip, you know the excitement that comes with planning each part of the journey. From booking a flight, or mapping the driving route to selecting where you will stay and each adventure you will experience. Once the planning process is over, it just becomes an itinerary. It is almost like a set of rules to follow to complete the planned trip. Yes, the vacation is still enjoyable, but the anticipation and future planning is what set our hearts on fire.

And the same is true for organizations. Each year most successful businesses take the time to create a strategic plan. By definition, a strategic plan is a collaborative process whereby an organization clarifies its direction by developing its mission, top-level goals, objectives and measures, actionable strategies, and the process for monitoring the plan. This team event can and should invoke the same level of excitement and drive into the new year that planning that family vacation does.

Plans are worthless. Planning is everything.
—Dwight D. Eisenhower

Breaking this down, a strategic plan consists of four parts:

  • Developing a mission statement for your strategic plan and business.

    • A mission statement is more than a dusty plaque on the wall in your reception area. It’s a cornerstone of your company culture and serves as a constant reminder of why you do what you do. Done right, this can be the springboard for renewed engagement for your team from top to bottom.
  • Creating goal statements and optimal outcomes.

    • Goal statements are high-level imperatives, long-term in nature that when accomplished collectively signal the achievement of the mission. First and foremost, start by defining goal areas or the critical pieces and parts that make up the mission. To create the right focus and trajectory, the next part of this stage is determining the desired outcome. These optimal outcomes are identified by taking each goal statement and asking, “If this goal were being significantly advanced, what outcomes, optimally, would we expect to see?”  In order to measure progress toward your goals, outcomes need to be set.
  • Determining actionable strategies to reach these goals.

    • Determine specific tasks, or actions, that need to be accomplished in order to meet your goals and optimal outcomes. To accomplish your goals, work must be done, work that is being added to already full plates. To help prioritize, it’s important to map out the critical actions that will move the team toward the achievement of the determined optimal outcomes.
  • Setting a process for monitoring progress. 

    • A unit of measure is a metric that can be used to determine whether progress is being made on goals. Often, this is referred to as  “the number of” or “percent of.” Units of measure can be thought of as the yardstick on which organization goals will be tracked. Remember, the goal is the outcome you want to achieve. The measures are how you will get there. When determining your measures and targets, it can be helpful to ask, “How will we know when the goal is achieved?”

Once the strategic plan has been created, however, there are a few things that need to happen next. Keep the drive and focus from fading when the planning meetings conclude:

  • Communicate the strategy, goals, and outcomes relentlessly.
  • Drive operational improvement to support the strategy.
  • maintain discipline in the face of emergencies, interruptions, and distractions.
  • Measure progress against the strategy often.

Efforts and courage are not enough without purpose and direction.
—John F. Kennedy

Our proven strategic planning process will bring each member of your team into clear alignment with your purpose, direction, and desired impact. However you define success, Giant Leap will teach you exactly how to achieve your courageous vision for a future that is worthy of your collective efforts and ambitions.

Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash.

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