Three Critical Questions for Strategic Planning

General Leadership

As a freshman engineering student, I remember vividly the day my professor announced we needed to know the answer before we performed the calculations. It’s a skill engineers have passed on to one another for centuries–does the answer I calculated make sense?…

Strategic planning must change with the times

N2Growth Blog

If you’re frustrated by your organization’s current strategic planning and execution processes or the outcomes from that work, you’re not alone. Planning Horizon: Old paradigm strategic planning has been historically focused on a long term horizon, usually between 3-5 years.

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Are You Aware Of The 3 Approaches to Strategic Planning?

The Empowered Buisness

The following article — Time is Money: The 3 Different Approaches to Strategic Planning — was written by Gabriel Najera — Founder, Najera Consulting Group. Even though I did strategy development for billion dollar corporations in the early days of my business 30 years ago, I had no idea that there were 3 different approaches to strategic planning. Time is Money: The 3 Different Approaches to Strategic Planning.

Tips On Honing A Culture Of Winning Through Focus by Martin Zwilling

In the CEO Afterlife

Good examples of startup focus before success include Google with their search engine, Facebook with friends networking, and Apple with personal computers. Bell, an experienced business expert, who highlights the power of strategic sacrifice in today’s complex business world.

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Complimentary Resource – Economist: Smart SMBs Fine-Tuning the Engines of Growth

Strategy Driven

Economist: Smart SMBs Fine-Tuning the Engines of Growth. Click here for more information on Economist: Smart SMBs Fine-Tuning the Engines of Growth. You just finished reading Complimentary Resource - Economist: Smart SMBs Fine-Tuning the Engines of Growth !

Free Business Plans for Small Business Owners and Start-ups

Strategy Driven

Because that’s the thing – your business plan is important. Moreover though, a solid business plan is a living document that will continue to guide your efforts as your business grows. A lot of those mistakes are the result of poor planning.

The Big Picture of Business – Business Success Checklist

Strategy Driven

Plan for the future. When your business has contingency plans for future scenarios you will seldom be caught by surprise. Most successful businesses have planned responses to most scenarios because they took the time to think “What If”. Design and re-engineering of products-services. Plans are in writing to address inventories and reducing surplus. Legal compliance and precautions plan is annually updated, with measurable goals.

The Big Picture of Business – Yesterdayism… Learning from the Past, Planning for the Future

Strategy Driven

The Old Became the New Again… The original speed for phonograph records, as invented in 1888, was 78-RPM, which engineers determined to be the most ideal for sound quality. This Annual Report issue celebrates the year, as basis for helping business people to prepare for the future.

The Big Picture of Business – Think Tanks to Strategize

Strategy Driven

Responding to crises is a good way to get in the research-planning habit. Planning for the Future. Planning, vision and strategic direction account for 15% of an organization’s full picture…constituting the trunk and roots of The Business Tree™.

The Big Picture of Business: Institutional Reviews Help Public Companies to Learn from the Downturn and Move Forward

Strategy Driven

This review is the basis for most elements that will appear in a strategic plan, including the organization’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats, actions, challenges, teamwork, change management, commitment, future trends and external forces.

The Big Picture of Business – The Future Has Moved… and Left No Forwarding Address.

Strategy Driven

One plans for business success through careful strategy. It is an ongoing process of evaluation, planning, tactical actions and benchmarking accomplishments. The following concepts do not constitute Futurism by themselves: sales, technology, re-engineering, marketing, research, training, operations, administration. Futurism is one of the most misunderstood concepts. It is not about gazing into crystal balls or reading tea leaves.

The Big Picture of Business: Critical Decision

Strategy Driven

Failure to plan for the present. They were combined derivatives of 78RPM, known by engineers as ‘the mother speed.’ Couch planning as the only way to avert a crisis. Changing technologies does not equate to planning and strategy development.

The Big Picture of Business – Sayings, Meanings and Interpretations

Strategy Driven

Janitor | custodian | sanitation engineer. Housewife | homemaker | domestic engineer. In reality, thoughtful planning for future eventualities enables one to prevent tragedies 85% of the time. Futurism is a series of thinking and reasoning skills, backed by planning.

The Big Picture of Business: Been There, Done That

Strategy Driven

An accounting firm may suggest that an economic forecast is a full-scope business plan (which it is not). Marketers might contend that the latest advertising campaign is equivalent to re-engineering the client company (though the two concepts are light years apart).

Forget Brand Preference – Win the Brand Relevance War

Strategy Driven

One of the world’s leading experts on branding and the winner of three awards for lifetime contributions to the science of marketing, David has published over 100 articles and fourteen books; including Strategic Market Management that has been translated into eighteen languages.

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The Big Picture of Business: Lessons About Business Planning To Be Learned from the Y2K Bug

Strategy Driven

Thus, efforts to treat a fraction of one percent took resources away from addressing the other 99.999% of companies’ full-scope planning. I advocated a balanced approach toward planning, visioning and the Big Picture. Inability to plan. Planning. The U.S.

Criteria for a Critical Decision


By doing this, you will accelerate the entire planning process and the manner decisions are being made throughout the organization. The idea is that you identify the Opportunity and Threats outside the organization and compare and contrast those with the Strengths and Weaknesses of the organization to identify a strategic direction forward.

Mindfulness as a Management Technique Goes Back to at Least the 1970s

Harvard Business Review

It first influenced business decades ago, through the development of an unmistakably hard skill that senior managers must master: strategic planning. Leaders today would be wise to learn from the past and to view strategic planning and mindfulness together. Pierre Wack, who was head of Group Planning at Royal Dutch/Shell in the 1970s, studied meditation extensively with teachers in Asia and, later, with the famous 20th-century mystic G.I.

You Can’t Make Good Predictions Without Embracing Uncertainty

Harvard Business Review

Much of the failure of long-term strategizing arises not from its difficulty but from confusion about how to do it. When hard strategic choices loom, executives ask their experts what the future will look like.

10 Ways to Get More Video Views | StrategyDriven

Strategy Driven

Everspark Interactive (ESI) is a full-service, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Agency specialized in getting their clients’ websites to rank in the top position on Google, Bing, and Yahoo. Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, Everspark Interactive was founded in June 2009 by internationally-known Search Engine Optimization (SEO) expert, Jason Hennessey and 20-year marketing veteran, Chris Watson.

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People Remember What You Say When You Paint a Picture

Harvard Business Review

” In more recent times, a British chemical engineer named Paul Thomas pronounced a vision “that one day we will be able to detect a previously undetectable tumour metabolising inside a human lung simply by asking a patient to breathe into a device.”

How Great Strategic Thinking Leaders Think. The Finale Says It All.

The Empowered Buisness

Thinking Behind Strategic Thinking. In my decades of working with leaders, I have found that the above are symptoms that a leader lacks the capacity to think strategically. The 3 Most Important Things You Need to Know About Strategic Thinking: What It Is AND Is Not.

How Leaders Build Great Organizations … And How They Can Destroy Them

Lead from Within

Identify a clear plan and achievable goals. Have a strategic plan that will guide growth and show where, how and what the company is planning to accomplish. Then translate that strategic plan into action by setting goals that are clear, achievable and measurable.

What is Your Company’s Human Operating System?

N2Growth Blog

” Your firm’s Human Operating System is, of course, informed by your vision , enabled by your strategic plans and is translated into company culture. They can be underpinned by “ Big Data ” and sophisticated analytics engines which crunch data and present it in meaningful ways. I bet if I asked you what your company is all about you’d give me that same ol’ rehearsed elevator pitch.

Five Questions That Should Shape Any Change Program

Harvard Business Review

When Pierre Beaudoin took over the aerospace division at Bombardier with a mandate for change, he and his team understood that boosting factory performance would require building lean capabilities, something the company sorely lacked despite its engineering experience. Those few leaders who actually reach their performance goal too often see it as the end of the road, and don't plan a transition to a period of continuous improvement. Change management Competition Strategic plannin

Real Leaders Become Awakeners

The Empowered Buisness

If you are like most leaders, you use a top-down approach in planning or envisioning your future. What if … with your next strategic plan, you instead take a bottoms up approach, using the holographic principle? BMW supplied diesel engines to Toyota.

Prevent Your Strategy Offsite from Being Meaningless

Harvard Business Review

We were halfway through the first day and, while everything was going according to plan, I couldn’t shake this nagging feeling that something wasn’t right. A decision in R & D affects Engineering, Manufacturing, Marketing, and Sales. We need to identify what’s distracting and what’s strategic.”. Communication Strategic planning Strategy I was facilitating the two-day executive offsite of a mid-sized technology company.

American Firms Dream of Growth but Invest in Efficiency

Harvard Business Review

On the efficiency topic, 87 percent of companies represented in the study plan to increase their investments in research and development – with a significant portion of this investment devoted to digital technologies such as mobile, cloud computing, analytics, social media, ecommerce, and machine-to-machine communication. Innovation Strategic planning Strategy After more than five years of sluggish growth, U.S. companies are finally starting to feel a bit more optimistic.

The Future Is Scary. Creative Thinking Can Help.

Harvard Business Review

For instance, Google’s original aspiration was to build the best search engine ever; arguably the organization achieved that. Only when they challenged their long-held assumption that “We are a search engine company” could they then come up with the “We want to know everything” notion which sparked projects such as Google Earth, Google Book Search, and Google Labs, along with further improvements to their fabled search engine.

How One Family Business Found Its Sweet Spot

Harvard Business Review

When we looked closely at the numbers, we found that only 15% of the jobs bid in the last several years fit the sweet spot, the win rate for these jobs was near 50% (compared to a loss rate of about 80% for jobs outside the sweet spot), the average operating margin for jobs inside the sweet spot were twice as high as those outside it, and 70% of the company''s engineering resources were going into bids that the company either lost or completed at very low (or even negative) profitability.

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December 2014 Carnival of HR

Lead Change Blog

Planning. Eventually, carnival goers have to make a plan for their time at the event or they’ll miss out on the attractions they would have enjoyed the most. As 2014 comes to a close, do you feel like you are on a Tilt-A-Whirl?

CapitalWorks - A Six Disciplines Client Case Study Part 2

Six Disciplines

Bluffton Motor Works in Bluffton, Indiana, is a global leader in custom-engineered fractional electric motors. Gallo in Cleveland, Ohio, is a marketing communications company providing design, engineering, production and service of three-dimensional exhibit and digital displays for museum, tradeshow and traveling exhibits. Management teams need to continue to stay focused on a plan. Several other companies provide strategic planning services.

Wake Up and Smell Your Strategy


Strategic reality is about events, and coping, and figuring things out. Overconfidence in strategic planning has led to financial crisis, botched and illegal wars, and missed opportunities in business, politics, sports, and life.


N2Growth Blog

A move toward the Advantage Strategy Paradigm begins with the adoption and commitment to a set of principles that guides all executives in the decisions and actions they take related to developing, planning, and executing strategy. Principles provide a broad context for strategic action and guidelines that can be communicated and taught at all levels of the organization, eventually becoming part of the organization’s culture. Engineered to Win. By Mark Hefner.

7 Leadership Questions That Will Move Your Needle in 2016

The Empowered Buisness

The best definition that I seen is that a BHAG is a statement of strategic intent. If you want to learn more about how to discern right business timing, I recommend William Duggan’s book Strategic Intuition and Sun Tzu’s book, The Are of War. The Secret Weapon of Great Leaders.

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Ideas Don't Equal Innovation | N2Growth Blog

N2Growth Blog

The reality is that many businesses are quick to recognize great ideas, but they often have no plan for how to successfully integrate them into their business model. Every sound business initiative begins with a solid strategic plan.

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Wake Up and Smell the Strategy


Strategic reality is about events, and coping, and figuring things out. Overconfidence in strategic planning has led to financial crisis, botched and illegal wars, and missed opportunities in business, politics, sports, and life.

Lean startup, lean company

Lead on Purpose

Startup success can be engineered by following the right process, which means it can be learned, which means it can be taught.”. What differentiates the success stories from the failures is that the successful entrepreneurs had the foresight, the ability, and the tools to discover which parts of their plans were working brilliantly and which were misguided, and adapt their strategies accordingly.”.

Leadership & Change

N2Growth Blog

All initiatives should include detailed risk management provisions that contain sound contingency and exit planning. Measurement : Any change initiative should be based upon solid business logic that drives corresponding financial engineering and modeling.

What’s Your Time Worth? Why Pricing Matters

N2Growth Blog

A recent trend which demonstrates that corporations have recognized the need for specific domain expertise in pricing is the emergence of a bevy of C-level positions charged with direct leadership over strategic pricing. By Mike Myatt , Chief Strategy Officer, N2growth.

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Business Model Architecture | N2Growth Blog

N2Growth Blog

Also, a common response is to confuse a sales engine, fulfillment process, operational process, technology platform, or any number of other areas as business models, where this is not the case.

Five Jobs Made More Effective With Change Management

Change Starts Here

Jobs that focus on process improvement, such as industrial engineers, Six Sigma Black Belts, and operations managers, are usually redesigning people’s jobs. Strategic Planning. Strategic planners who can connect the dots have a better chance of seeing results stem from their efforts. A recent study by the Association for Change Management Professionals (ACMP) shows that 73% of change management professionals surveyed also have other, non-change-related job duties.

Do You Speak the Language of Performance Driven Execution?

N2Growth Blog

Undeterred, the fox keeps re-strategizing, but the pattern repeats itself over and over. what drives your economic engines (focus areas)? And, they must constantly reevaluate critical decisions to meet long-term, strategic objectives. WHEN do we plan to arrive? As we move into the most important aspect of the vernacular, OrgSx is ONLY about execution (getting things done), both strategic and flawless. Describe what they must become (Impact Plans).