Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail!

Of course you must have heard this expression many times before but none the less many organizations just don’t know how to plan. However planning improperly is not much better than no plan at all. Planning should actually take a scientific approach. Whether you are planning a new business or a new segment of a business, or re-engineering your existing business processes, planning needs to be strategic and measurable.

When an organization decides to reach outside their staffs abilities for help in the planning process, that might be the best strategic move they make. Most organizations usually do not have the expertise to properly evaluate what needs be done to plan for an expansion or re-engineering of their current business processes. Consultants are many times hired for the purpose of evaluating those needs and then scientifically determining the best approach to gain measurable results in route to the ultimate goals of the organization.

If you are not familiar with a scientific planning approach this will be a good information for you to research. One of the more popular planning methodologies used by business practitioners is that of the Strategy Map and Balanced Scorecard. These management approaches are well known and have been developed by Professor Robert Kaplan and Dr. David Norton beginning in the late 1980’s. Together they have published many books on the subject. There is an abundance of information available on the internet on this topic. Here is a brief overview of Strategy Based Planning.

The Balanced Scorecard Strategy Map is a powerful framework. At the highest conceptual level, it helps organizations translate strategy into a set of linked operational objectives that drive both behavior and performance. It articulates strategy on a single page across four balanced perspectives – financial, customer, internal processes, and people and technology – and validates whether those objectives tell a coherent story. The Strategy Map is the blueprint that guides users through the process of developing the right set of strategic initiatives, measures, and targets, and communicates the strategy simply and powerfully to your organization and to your stakeholders. In short, it is the single document around which your strategy management system will revolve. An effective strategy-focused organization cannot afford to be without one.

Any organization that gets involved with this type of strategic planning effort for the first time will view this as a real benefit and a great tool to continually move toward attaining the goals they have established for themselves. Without a scientific strategy with measurements in place, rarely will you see an organization succeed to the level of success that they are capable of.

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