Strategic planning is a valuable exercise for most businesses, however it is also laced with risk due to the scope of the activity. I came across a great article that talks about the four most common fatal flaws in this process and wanted to share it just to spread the word. Here are the most common fatal flaws in strategic planning:
- Skipping Rigorous Analysis: Performing incomplete analysis (or skipping the analysis step) is a sure recipe for disaster. Make sure you examine your problem, your landscape and your organisation from all sides otherwise you can miss what later on will seem exceedingly obvious.
- Believing Strategy can be built in a day: Strategies evolve, there’s no two ways about it. A strategy is not an idea that everyone can get behind, but is the product of thought, deliberation and experience. Give the process the time it deserves.
- Failing to Link Strategic Planning with Strategic Execution: A common problem is to come up with a great strategy, but mess up the execution. A strategic plan needs to be carried out by the whole organisation, so make sure you communication strategies are in place, as well as control mechanisms to make sure everyone “get’s it”.
- Dodging Strategy Review Meetings: It is terribly easy to focus entirely on the forumation of a strategy and try to avoid reviews and checkpoints that are set up after. Remember, a strategy is only as successful as it’s execution and review meetings are there to provide a feedback loop as to it’s success (or failure).
I thought the article was a great read and a reminder for anyone working in a strategic capacity. Once you get into the swing of things it’s easy to stay on the treadmill, but strategy in itself involves taking time out to take an external look at what you’re doing. Make sure your benchmark rings true and you’re in for a treat. Omit that important follow-through and in time, everything will come crashing down.
Read the article here: Four Fatal Flaws of Strategic Planning