In our last newsletter we shared a few snappy shortcuts, which you could use to complete your strategic plan. If you’re still one of the many organizations that hasn’t finished your strategic planning then it’s time to explore potential roadblocks standing in your way. Certainly, there could be many obstacles preventing you from making progress. So in the spirit of simplicity here are a few common obstacles, where they originate from, and a few suggestions, which might help you overcome them.
I don’t have the support I need: As a subscriber to our newsletter you’re probably already a champion of the strategic planning process. But what if you’re not getting the executive sponsorship or support from other departmental leaders?
- Your job is sell the organizational impact that collaborative and coordinated strategic planning will have across the organization. What is your management team really trying to fix, accomplish, or avoid? How will strategic planning compliment their efforts? Can you quantify the cost to your organization measured in dollars, productivity, or morale by not seriously tackling the planning process?
Planning in the past has been a terrible experience: It’s not uncommon for strategic planning to go awry. Clunky coordination, poor project management, and lack of clarity to the process are just a few areas where things go sideways.
- What’s the best thing you can do? Acknowledge what went wrong and why during previous planning. How is your current planning process going to be different? It’s important to address the concerns of stakeholders before attempting to secure their commitment to the process.
While it’s a priority we can’t seem to prioritize it: It’s true. Not all priorities are created equal. Some are more equal than others. With competing priorities piling on the plates of management and staff sometimes it feels as if nothing strategic is actually getting done.
- Good planning requires energy, effort, and often resources. Among all the stakeholders involved determine who is going to absorb the investment of time into their ongoing responsibilities and who will need things taken off their plate. Some people will need great time allocated to supporting the process based on their individual involvement. Data gathering and synthesis, financial modeling, and market opportunity assessments are examples of tasks that require time.
If you’re planning has stalled it’s important to address the root cause. These are only a few of the common obstacles faced. Your task is to uncover the ones relevant to you, your management team, and your organization.