By November 28, 2023 No Comments

As approach the end of year, and are deep into the new year planning process, the question we should start with is WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE?

Let’s look at today, tomorrow and the future as part of this process. Where do we stand? What is the future of our organization from the perspective of our 3 key constituents:

  • Our Customers
  • The People in our Care
  • Our Shareholders and Stakeholders

Although we have made improvements and gains in the key areas of service, cost and profitability during this past year, our responsibility is to ensure sustainability and to have an understanding of where the puck is going.

A good way of visualizing the building process is by asking a series of questions that solicit feedback from your team – utilizing a thoughtful approach to the planning process. Think of this as:

What is the issue/opportunity that must be addressed? (Developing vision and purpose)

How will I get my team aligned and committed? (Gaining organizational commitment)

How do I turn intent into business results? (Achievement)

You are now beginning to describe the “right stuff” the leadership team must have to get the job done.

The plan should be anchored to the key organizational opportunities and challenges.
What are the leading indicators of where we have been, and where we are going?


Maybe your company is having several challenges as it pertains to technology:


  1. New technology, and especially disruptive technology, are driving the industry to entirely new platforms for both products and service.
  2. Competitors with new and better products are eating the company’s market share by as much as X % per year.
  3. The cost of sales is rising.
  4. Talent defection is becoming a serious issue.
  5. An internal job satisfaction survey revealed deteriorating morale across the company.
  6. Complaints have doubled within the space of nine months.

Company strengths:

  1. Sitting on a substantial cash reserve
  2. High recurring revenue from a broad-based customer portfolio
  3. Brand strength — high
  4. Fixed costs — lowest in the industry
  5. Strong dealer network

You are now ready to create a Strategic Perspective & Vision. You and your team, working together, develop a compelling vision and strategy for the organization and its business units and functions. You understand both the short-term and long-term view of both the organization and the overall industry’s strengths, challenges, and opportunities. You identify the supporting behaviors needed to execute the plan.

Supporting behavior needed from your management team:

  • Leads efforts to develop strategies that capitalize on the organization’s unique strengths and capabilities.
  • Anticipates short- and longer-term competitive trends that may affect key strategies
  • Identifies gaps that may hinder the organization’s ability to execute strategies (e.g., talent commitment issues, technology product short-falls, engineering resources)
  • Positions the company to respond quickly to perceived/defined threats, Inspiring Others

It is now time to positively affect the behavior of others through their buy-in and a robust communication plan. This will motivate them to achieve personal satisfaction and high performance through a sense of purpose and cooperation.

You develop key metrics that monitor business health and results. They will also help to identify and successfully generate new products, market, and geographic growth opportunities and consistently help to deliver positive short-term results. Working together will allow the team to search for new ways to add value and to position the organization for future success.

In summary this planning process creates the vision and strategy to answer the question:
WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE? It will create and communicate a customer-focused vision and corporate alignment and engage all employees in pursuit of a common goal. It embraces the mission, values, and company ethics in all we do through strategic agility and rapid results from an engaged team.

I wish all a Healthy, Happy, Successful and Prosperous New Year.

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