Momentum - Business to Business Online Magazine MOMENTUM Summer 2018 - Page 10

Biz Tips Strategic Planning  is the most important function of a CEO or business owner. It identifies where a company wants to be at a defined point in time in the future and what actions it is going to take to get there. Strategic Planning is critical to the growth and success of every company. If the company has a Board of Directors, a formal strategic planning process enables the Board to have a significant impact on the company’s overall direction and on-going performance. For a company of any size, strategic planning is the “roadmap” to future success. The structure of the strategic plan is designed to carry out strategic thinking, direction, and action leading to the achievement of consistent planned results. Specifically, there are 7 elements that make up every Strategic Plan:    1. Organization Vision and Mission    2. Strategic analysis    3. Strategy    4. Long-term objectives    5. Integrated programs    6. Financial projections    7. Executive summary The strategic aspect of the planning process is understanding the current operating and performance of the company and the relationship to the market, the  vision and mission  of the company, the resources and structure needed to achieve the roadmap goals, and the summary of how the resulting strategic plan will impact the future of the company. A strategic plan must be a living document, clearly communicated throughout the business, and should not be a “fluffy” document that ends up collecting dust on a shelf and wasted time and energy in its development. The purpose of planning is not to produce plans; it is to produce results. A strategic plan needs to be the result of a productive process of committed team members led by the business owner or CEO of a business to provide the thinking and planning for the future success of the company, allowing for the detailed operational planning to achieve short-term (90-day) results. It should also define measurement performance criteria representing the long-term success goals for the company. In embracing the importance of strategic planning to achieve both short term (1-3 years) and longer term (3-5 years) results, there are 4 key issues to recognize: 1. It is essential the process be led by the owner or CEO and the executives as well as managers in the company understand and use the planning process; 2. There must be organizational commitment to both the planning process and the implementation of the plan; all the participants in the process must see the benefits to themselves personally as well as to the company as a whole; 3. The planning process is as important as the content of the plan itself; 4. The planning process is never done. It is part of the overall process of managing the company and is an ongoing process rather than an annual event. 9 MOMENTUM / Summer 2018 By Mike Hilderbrand, MBA, CBC, CSSC ActionCOACH of Galveston www.actioncoach/mikehilderbrand No company has the option to “hope” it will be successful; every company must have a management-driven committed and disciplined process of strategic planning to create a roadmap to both short-term and long-term business and financial success. It should be reviewed every 90 days – and updated as needed - to ensure that it remains alive, current and relevant. Your business coach can help you with this process.