Strategic Assessment

The best place to begin is to analyze what is already in place. We offer a complete strategic assessment of your organization or an organization that you recently acquired. This assessment can also be applied to startup companies and/or venture capital projects to make sure than the entrepreneur is thinking beyond the business plan stage to include strategic analysis and decisions. Results of the analysis can be used to enhance strategic planning efforts.

This assessment includes elements of your written and unwritten strategic plan. Through observations and interviews, along with a comprehensive analysis of your organization from the corporate planning level down through to the implementation stage, we can gather a “picture” of the organization at the present point in time and then compare that with industry data related to the future.

This strategic assessment includes comparing the organization to industry conventional strategic benchmarks, including sales and budgeting data. The assessment begins at the macro or corporate level and incrementally assesses the strategic efforts down to the operational or functional level. A comprehensive written report is provided at the conclusion of the analysis.  

Creating a Strategic Business Model

Many companies fail to firmly establish a business model as part of their strategic initiative. This highly-intensive, one-day facilitated session with your executive team discusses topics such as:

  • Creating clearly defined mission and vision statements
  • Creating long-term Principles and short-term Values for your organization
  • Evaluating and enhancing your value proposition from a focused customer perspective
  • Deciding how “effective” and how “efficient” your organization should be right now, given your industry, competition, the economy, etc.
  • Creating a strategic mindset and environment where your company can operate “good, fast, cheap and flexible” from the strategic to the operational level
  • Analyzing your pricing model in relation to your business model, marketing approach and organizational philosophy
  • Analyze the value proposition presented by your organization in relation to the job-to-be-done by your customers

Creating a Corporate Strategic Plan

Over the course of several days of meetings and facilitated sessions, your organization establishes a macro, corporate strategic approach that all executives and managers can use to propel your organization forward. This high-level strategic planning approach includes the elements the Creating a Strategic Business Model program plus:

  • Using a series of basic analysis tools (for a more in-depth analysis, see the Game Theory program), we assist you in analyzing your company, your industry and your competitors. This program includes an analysis of your program and services from several different perspectives (internal, customer, competition, etc.).
  • This program includes utilizing an industry report to help determine benchmark standards from a basic budgeting perspective. It also includes using analyst data to project industry growth for the next five years.  
  • After thoroughly analyzing the internal and external environment, the selection of 2-5 grand strategies will be built into your strategic model. These strategies will be the standard for which all corporate and operational decisions are made during the implementation process.
  • Strategies and tactics are then created for each of your product and service offerings. These might include strategies to earn market share away from the competition.

The final strategic plan is customized for each individual client but may include many of the following sections, as appropriate:

  • Principles and Values
  • Effectiveness and Efficiency
  • Pricing or fundraising schemes
  • Narrow-focus or broad differentiation
  • Operational excellence tactics
  • Vision statement
  • Mission statement
  • Issues or problems facing the organization
  • Major assumptions
  • Five forces analysis
  • Market analysis
  • SWOTT and TOWS analysis
  • Stakeholder analysis
  • Risk assessment
  • Selection of 2-5 grand strategies
  • Contingency plan
  • Succession plan
  • Exit strategy
  • Lessons learned  

Game Theory, Analysis and Strategic Decision Making

This is a stand-alone module but often incorporated into the Creating a Corporate Strategic Plan program for those who want a more quantitative analysis of the competition and the industry. It includes utilizing various software packages to help select strategies and counter strategies.  

 Extensive quantitative analysis, including running Monte Carlo simulations on various scenarios incorporated with game theory helps to narrow options for action and counteraction in order to select strategies and tactics to be implemented.  

Preparing the Strategic Plan for Implementation

Once a strategic plan is created, it needs to be implemented. Many organizations take the final draft of the plan and separate it into sections by division or department, and then create goals. This traditional approach to strategic planning is limiting. In fact, if your organization is still governed by goal creation and achievement, you likely are not implementing  your strategic plan to your fullest capacity.

Using our proprietary process, we are able to help you convert your strategic plan into an action-based plan. Instead of arbitrarily set goals, we concentrate on specific actions and behaviors that needs to take place. We help divide all of the major activities that are required to achieve the strategic objectives into milestones, tasks, subtasks and supporting activities.

These can then be assigned to an individual or team for implementation.

Another benefit of using this approach is that these are designed around the same methods that project managers use. In fact, these elements can be inserted into a Gantt chart so management and leadership can control and monitor progress on a regular basis.

Our team can help you convert your strategic plan into an action-based plan, complete with corporate objectives, management milestones and tasks, subtasks and supporting activities, all integrated into a Gantt chart so everyone can see their assigned actions and dates for completion.  

 We can spend one day with your implementation team, helping to demonstrate how a strategic Gantt chart can be created or we can work directly with your team to help construct the entire strategic Gantt chart.

Strategic Advisor: Executing the Strategic Plan

Developing a strategic plan is just part of the equation. A failed strategic plan is often not in the planning, but in the implementation.

We offer an annual service to meet with executive and operational teams on either a quarterly or monthly basis to help evaluate the implementation of the strategic plan and make any adjustments that may be required. As part of this program, we constantly monitor what is occurring within your industry and among your competitors. Using proprietary techniques and databases, our competitive intelligence team helps our Lead Consultants analyze opportunities, so our client interactions can be proactive, rather than reactive. In fact, it is not unusual for our Lead Consultant to enter your progress meetings having information related to the industry or competition that that your executive team has yet to be aware of.   

The quarterly service includes meeting once a quarter with the executive team to assess the effectiveness of your strategic plan.

 The monthly service includes meeting 8 times throughout the year with the operational or implementation team and then quarterly with the executive team to help monitor, control and assess the implementation process.

Future-Based Reporting™

Most organizations make a critical mistake when it comes to control and monitoring of the strategic plan. Reports are often required, notifying management and leadership of what has just occurred during the last reporting period (monthly or quarterly). In essence, while strategy is about the future, team members are asked to stop the implementation process on a regularly scheduled time and write a new chapter of the organization’s history book – the last reporting period.

While there are some benefits to historical reporting (like data for a trend analysis), no more than 30% of any report in your organization (strategic or project) should be about the past. The majority of your reports (70%) should be reporting on what is about to occur.  

We have developed a unique process of reporting on the future. Would you rather receive a report stating that a major supplier missed a delivery date last month or would you rather receive a report that indicates that a supplier is expected to deliver in 2 weeks so you can be proactive and contact the supplier in advance.

We can help you change the culture of your organization by strategically concentrating on the future instead of reporting on the past.
This program includes helping to design one report that is future-based and helping to facilitate one executive meeting and one operational meeting using our Future-Based Reporting™ process.  

One-Day Strategy Session

There are many times throughout the year that situations occur that are not part of the strategic plan. Here are just a few examples:

  • A major supplier may be close to going out of business and you need to respond
  • A competitor may lose a major contract and you need to decide if you should acquire the competitor, pursue the contract or both
  • A strategic alliance or joint venture opportunity may present itself
  • An global opportunity with some risk may be available
  • An revenue-generating opportunity to license your technology may exist
  • An opportunity that requires a negotiation strategy may exist

Strategic opportunities should not be entered lightly. There are risks and unintended consequences that often exist with operating outside the scope of the strategic plan.

 We can come in and facilitate a one-day session to help evaluate the opportunity and prepare a strategic response.  

Strategic Planning for Executives and Board Members

This two-day, highly intensive program is designed to train executives and board members on the more complex aspects of strategic planning. Topics include:

  • Mission statements
  • Vision statements
  • Principles
  • Values
  • Analytical tools
  • Pricing strategies  or fund-raising for nonprofits
  • Balancing “effectiveness” and “efficiency”
  • Analyzing industry reports
  • Sales and Marketing at the strategic level
  • Selecting grand strategies
  • Implementation of the plan
  • Control and Monitoring
  • Sustainability and growth

 All participants receive a copy of the workbook, How to Become a Strategic Mastermind, a signed copy of the accompanying book, Creating Strategic Decision Makers and an electronic copy of a template to be used for developing a quick strategic plan.

Strategic Industry Briefings

THE STRATEGY EXPERT® provides the highest quality Strategic Industry Briefings (SIB) available. Our research and analysis is based upon the most current data available from various sources within the industry, including industry reports and competitors. We not only know what is happening within the industry, we analyze the data and provide possible strategic insight into ways to strategically cut cost, grow the business, increase revenue, enhance profits, earn market share and/or become an industry leader.

Our Strategic Industry Briefing is presented to your Board and/or Executive team . This one-day session includes not only current trends, but what industry experts see as the trends for the next five years. The information displayed at the SIB can directly be incorporated into your strategic plan.

What are some of the benefits of a typical Strategic Industry Briefing?

  • The most current industry data will be presented. In some cases, this data may only be a few days old.
  • Trends that have been taking place recently within the industry and most importantly, industry projections for the next five years will be presented. 
  • Updates on industry leading (competitor) organizations.
  • Financial projections for the industry, including gross revenue and profit expectations.
  • Budgeting benchmarks based upon actual industry performance.
  • Strategic analysis of the industry and identification of strategies that appear to be working and those that appear to not be working.
  • Market segment data.
  • Strategies and tactics related to Operational Excellence such as ways to reduce cost, increase market share, grow customer base, etc.

Note: THE STRATEGY EXPERT® is registered with the US Trademark Office. All rights reserved.  

None of our strategy or strategy-related sessions includes extensive strategic planning in areas areas that require uniquely skilled individuals with certifications or licensing within their disciplines including legal, financial, human resources or IT.