Strategic planning is about looking ahead but also learning from past experiences. Aligning your expertise to today’s socio-economic environment may be an option you should consider when planning out any further activities or strategies.
To get you started:
1. Clearly define your objectives
The necessity of having clear objectives derives from the need to have a focused plan, where one should:
- set short term goals (the more specific they are the easier it will be to measure them)
- set long term goals (your goals will keep you on track, helping you not to lose focus)
- describe expected results (take into account your past experiences, the challenges met, as well as successes attained).
In the mind map below you can visualize some of the characteristics that you can set for your goals in order to make them distinct:
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2. Get your team members involved in strategic planning. The participation of other team members makes them more responsible and more willing to be focused on performance and results. Collaboration with team members can take many forms, but some of the most common ones are:
3. Create a plan that can be easily followed and understood by your team, organization and partners. Share your plan with other team members so that everyone can be on the same page and add on their specific activities:
- planning: activities, resources needed , people in charge, finances needed
- monthly targets
- annual targets
- risk factors
4. Assign clear tasks relevant for each step of the plan
How do you go about sharing tasks with your team? To make things easier by using a mind map, you can easily assign the right tasks to the right people.
In the mind map below created with Mindomo mind mapping software you can visualize the layout of the strategic plan and the people that were assigned to each part of the plan:
This type of structuring allows for adding comments and for expanding your strategic plan as needed. The more activities you have the more you will have to add on other tasks and assign them to the people who will be responsible for them.
5. Create performance indicators to help you evaluate your business as you go. It is essential to first identify key performance indicators for your business or organization and then to start defining them clearly according to the things you want to accomplish. Depending on how many departments and fields of activity you are having you can structure your performance indicators into:
- qualitative (customer satisfaction, job satisfaction, perception of product and service)
- quantitative (new accounts created, productivity, sales, completed tasks, nr. of complaints)
See in the mind map below an example of organizing your performance indicators on a mind map:
6. Make your results visible – this allows for transparency
Being held accountable is not an option for a business that respects itself. Employees as well as clients have to be informed regarding the progress and results of a company. Being transparent with your results may represent one of the best values your company can offer, mainly because the issue of trust is difficult to attain, but it is even more difficult to maintain.