Rapid Conversion: Strategies into Action
Secrets to a speedy culture shift include 1. engaged and committed team members, 2.access to data, 3. leadership support and excitement, and 4. a tried and true process to follow. Here is how a 1,100 people-strong organization used these secrets to create a 3-year strategic plan, a 1-year annual plan with 20 resourced projects, and other unexpected benefits.
From July to October, a diverse set of 50 employees, gathered in several working sessions to follow this process (templates and coaching were provided in each step to achieve efficiently and test validity and quality):
1. Construct/revise/validate the mission, vision, and core values.
2. Gather and evaluate data (using various methods) to identify trends and gaps from customer, employee, culture, organization, processes, prior learning, and external environment data. Categorize trends/issues into Opportunities, Threats, Strengths or Weaknesses (SWOTs).
3. Prioritize SWOTs based on impact on mission and probability/frequency of occurrence.
4. Identify and prioritize strategies.
5. Develop 3-year strategies with specific goals, benefits, stakeholders, and accountable team members.
6. Cascade to a 1-year annual plan with strategies (or parts) to be done this year with specific goal, measures, targets, strategy leaders, team members, and other resources.
7. Establish infrastructure including training and on-boarding project leaders, team members, and leaders in their roles.
8. Lead the plans throughout the year with project execution, performance tracking, lots of communication.
This was not the organization’s 1st strategic plan so you may ask, what caused the cultural shift? Simple answer, the secrets mentioned above along with the team trusting and using the process. The rigor and ramifications of this process resulted in unintended and intended valuable benefits. The leader and her team now have a platform to drive and maintain focus. She has provided every employee information on the shared mission, vision, and needed core values. She is talking about and sharing the plans and performance. Performance measures are tied directly to planned goals and targets. Everyone has learned more about their organization, customers, and competition; this increased knowledge nurtures innovation and excitement to make a bigger impact. Strategies and projects have clearer roles, responsibilities, and accountability.
Congratulations to the organization and we wish them continued success on their journey to a culture of continual quality improvement, achieving more – faster and with better quality!