Articles tagged "Strategic Plan"
An association executive director asked during a recent coaching conversation, “Am I doing something wrong, or why are the strategic plan review meetings I hold with my senior staff so boring? My Director of Operations said yesterday, ‘It feels as if all we’re doing is tracking stuff so we can mark it off this master plan.’ You know what? She’s right. That’s exactly what it feels like.”
I try to notice trends in what my clients are facing. Last week presented a trend I couldn’t help but notice: Three of my clients were tired, frustrated, and struggling to please customers’ shifting and very challenging demands. My clients weren’t happy. Their team members weren’t happy. Their customers weren’t happy. No matter what my clients tried to do to please their challenging customers, it wasn’t enough. My clients’ team members were burning out. Team members were starting to quit – and leave without notice! My clients were getting desperate.
Two prospective strategic planning clients reached out to me this past week. Both organizations have a new CEO, at least two new board members each, at least two new senior staff members each, and both were requesting information on how I might facilitate their plan development during a two-day board retreat. It became quickly apparent, both CEOs were simply approaching their outreach to me as somewhat of a checklist item from their board:
The COVID pandemic has changed not only how and where we work, it’s also changed our priorities and perspectives. What used to be a typical day at the office, has become an extended day of jumping between working remotely, home schooling our kids, serving as on-site technical support for our kids and as remote support for our parents, all while monitoring the status of our grocery delivery to ensure the doorbell doesn’t announce its arrival during a virtual client meeting. What used to be a typical day at the office, has become an extended day of jumping between working remotely, home schooling our kids, serving as on-site technical support for our kids and as remote support for our parents, all while monitoring the status of our grocery delivery to ensure the doorbell doesn’t announce its arrival during a virtual client meeting. We are now finding that what used to matter has changed. What we used to have under control, we don’t. What we used to know as givens, are not. And, what used to be typical 3 to 5 to 10+ year strategic planning, has become 12 to 18+ month strategic planning.
The calendar year is off to a great start. Sales are coming in faster than expected. Revenues are exceeding last year’s numbers, and the production schedule is full with the need for extended over-time becoming more of the norm than the exception. You must be doing things right. Right?
Maybe. But then again, maybe not. You could be riding an economic wave that is simply pulling you along for the ride. As a leadership team, if you don’t know why you’re experiencing the success – or challenges – you’re currently experiencing, you’re not doing your job. It’s time to regroup and understand why. It’s time for a first quarter leadership strategy session.