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Design of the Planning Process


You and your team are facilitated through a process designed to fit your business and meet your unique needs in preparing, strategically, for the future.



Strategic Analysis


The Customer Challenge


The challenge is to keep the customers you have and find new ones in order to grow your business.  This step explores unique ways to do this.



The Competitive Battle


Your competitors want you out of the way.


You need to defend your position, ensure your survival and develop proactive strategies to grow your business in the midst of this ongoing battle. 



Strategy Profile


You must ensure that you are competitively positioned - that you are more than a "me to" business dependent upon what others in the industry choose to do.


You need to ensure that the customer understands what sets your products and services apart - your unique competitive advantage.  You need to continuously enhance this competitive advantage to stay ahead.



The Changing Environment


Nothing stays the same forever.  You need to monitor the trends that will become threats. 


You need to prepare the business to cope with change - expected and unexpected - and to proactively pursue strategic opportunities that create a stronger strategic position for your firm and force others to keep up.



Opportunities and Weaknesses on the Inside


You must always be working to get better.  The key is making the right choices for improving your organization and improving your competitive position and then allocating the resources to achieve these results.



The Business Model


Understanding the underlying business model through which you are achieving growth and profit is essential.


Understanding how and when that model will need to change to match industry, market and environmental change is being strategic and is vital to your long term success.



Prioritizing Strategic Goals


You can't do everything you need to do or would like to do.  You have to select your priorities with an eye on current profitability and long term success.




Planning Your firm's Strategic Future


Formulating Strategy and Defining Strategic Intent


Out of the discussions generated above and the priorities that you have chosen, you now identify the broad strategies that will ensure that your business moves ahead proactively and moves into the future in the strongest strategic position possible.



The Written Strategic Plan and Action Plan


Using this strategic intent as your guide, you craft results-oriented objectives.


Each objective must define a result - one that you and the rest of the team can understand and to which you can all commit.  Each objective incorporates a measure of that result (to ensure everyone will know when it has been achieved) and a time frame within which this will happen.  You also identify who will be accountable for ensuring that each objective is achieved.


The Action Plan creates further detail as to how each objective is to be achieved, with the focus on the most immediate twelve months.  It also includes the time frame for each action or task and who will own the process of ensuring that these details are completed.



The Execution

           This is the most critical step, given all the work described above.  You must ensure that you and your team complete the work to which you have committed your resources and your people.  This process is designed to achieve follow-through on a continuing basis.  This is where most plans fail and it is the intent of Strategic Management Associates to stay with you through this effort to ensure that you stayed focused on achieving the plan's objectives and strategies.


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