Q. We would like to develop a strategic plan for our company. Do we need a facilitator?
A. A facilitator is key to a successful strategic planning session. Here's why.
YOU are the EXPERT. Your team has the expertise and the knowledge of how your company or organization runs. You don’t need an outsider to tell you what to do.
GUIDE the PROCESS. The facilitator simply acts as your guide to keep the decision-making process moving efficiently. Too often, strategic planning is guided by someone within the company who has a stake in the final outcome and will therefore guide the process in that direction. The facilitator will ensure that the group stays focused.
VOICES are HEARD. The facilitator understands group dynamics and the intricacies of the planning process to help the group achieve its desired results. He/ she helps to ensure that all voices have a chance to be heard. When voices are heard and acknowledged the participants have greater buy-in of the final plan.
CLEAR the DISTRACTIONS. The facilitator creates the rules and helps enforce a pause in the day-to-day operations to allow participants to clearly see a vision for the future and define specific actionable areas to improve business performance.
DEFINE the FUTURE. The facilitator provides a process without prejudice to help you answer: • What does success look like? • What are the priorities? • What does our path look like for the next five years and beyond? • How do we position our organization for success? • How do we work together as a more cohesive team to accomplish our goals?
What is Strategic Planning?
Strategic planning is the process of clearing out the clutter and the “busy” to map out the future of an organization. It’s like putting on glasses for the first time and having a blurry world become clear.
Effective strategic planning articulates where an organization is going, the actions needed to make progress, and how it will measure success.
However, strategic planning is not the job of the owner, president or boss alone. It must include the key stakeholders that help lead your organization. It is their purpose, priorities, outcomes and empowerment that will allow your strategic plan to move from a binder on a shelf to a working document.
Set direction and priorities.
Get everyone on the same page.
Focus energy and resources.
Create measurable outcomes.