Strategy planning and decision making

 In Strategy

Need to make a big decision for your business or a little one for that matter? Make a big investment, hire someone, fire someone, choose the color of your stationery, decide whether to buy pizza for everyone – How do you know whether your decision will be right or wrong, good or bad?

First question you should ask is – What is the fit with the overall plan – the medium to long-term vision?

Will it help you get there, or hinder your progress; does it build on other decisions you have taken or change your direction?

But wait a minute! What is the long-term vision?

Do you really have one, or is it just a vague idea about getting bigger, growing sales, improving margins, retiring early?

Chances are you don’t have a clear, unambiguous statement on the tip of your tongue that describes exactly where you want your business to be in the future. If you don’t have one, neither do your employees, your partners or your suppliers. If you don’t have one, none of you have any context in which to make decisions. You can’t be sure if all of your collective efforts are helping you to reach your long-term desired state.

It’s time to think about creating a vision for your future state; where and how do you want to be 2-3 years from now?

This will be the goal towards which you will steer the business And the framework in which all challenges will be weighed-up, decided upon and executed.

But don’t beat yourself up! You and your colleagues know just about everything you need to know to create this vision and more importantly, to also figure out how you are going to get there. You just need to take the time to draw on all your experience, knowledge and gut instinct to create a…. Strategy

It’s not difficult you just need to go through the process.

  1. Where are things right now? Customers/Competition/Technology etc.
  2. From these what are the key drivers of change that exist today, that will have a bearing in 2-3 years time?
  3. What will your world/industry look like 2-3 years from now?
  4. What is the importance and certainty of the drivers defined above?
  5. What is your desired future state?
  6. Looking at all of these inputs, what are you going to do to address the few critical success factors and overcome the identified challenges that will allow you to reach your desired future state?

These are your Strategic Objectives. The 4-6 key things that must be done in the next 2-3 years in order to achieve your desired future state.

Now it’s time to consider when are they going to be addressed and who is responsible? That is your Strategic Plan.

Don’t Panic. It doesn’t all have to be done at the same time starting next week. You need to sit down and break up the Strategic Objectives into bite size tactical objectives that can be executed over the coming years. For now you just need a broad outline and key milestones.
And lastly, communicate the Vision and Plan to your entire organization and partners. They need to know in order to understand the game plan and the value and context of what they are being asked to accomplish on a day-to-day, month-to-month and year-to-year basis.

If you would like help in creating a Roadmap to your future, please contact John Tooher at or call our office at
610 548 5278

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