6 Steps for Successful Strategic Planning

6 February 2020

Come up with a plan and do it. What can be simpler than that? Well, it’s as simple as saying, build a rocket and fly to Mars. In actuality a lot can happen between point A and point B. So we’re going to need a more defined set of steps, hopefully the following steps we’ve summarized can help your company’s strategic planning and avoid short-term thinking and simple check-box planning.

1. Start from costs and budget. A lofty idea is good, but the funding should be realistic. This also includes any resources at your disposal, such as time and talent. Keep in mind that in terms of talent, there is now the option of outsourcing some critical aspects, such as IT, which is IDStar’s forte.

2. Outline expectations for all stakeholders. Next comes the outline of responsibilities for all stakeholders, along with clear timelines and expected, measurable results. This is to prevent misunderstanding and bad execution.

3. Prioritize by context. Set out a clear picture of the resulting condition you want and try to have measurable results on everything, and then consider the resources from step 1 so you can determine priorities. At the end of this step, you should know what objectives to emphasize, tone down, or even eliminate.

4. Put that strategy on a page, preferably just one concise page. Summarize all the above into a one-page writing that is clear for everyone on board. Communicate this one-page to everyone in the company, and when in doubt, come back to this. This is also the phase where you must ensure that everyone is in agreement before execution.

5. Execute the plan. Admittedly, this step probably deserves a separate chapter on its own and it varies according to your business. But on the overall planning, this counts as a phase which requires great commitment and follow up. 

6. Adapt to change. The only permanent thing is change. Along time, as you measure results and revisit your one-page plan, there might be changes. Be committed to your goal, but flexible in the ways to achieve it in case the plan has become invalid due to changes in the business environment.