Strategy and Planning

There are several keys to success for companies and organizations when it comes to developing a strategy and a plan to execute that strategy. First the organization must determine “Who are we?”, “What business are we in?”, and “Who do we want to be and what business do we want to be in?” The top management, or upper management, of the company must be very honest when answering these questions. This is the very first step in strategic planning. Once these questions are answered, a mission or vision statement can be developed to provide long-term direction to the organization. Once the mission or vision is formulated the organization can begin to develop goals and then develop the strategic action plan. Once there are clear goals and a plan, management then can begin implementation of the plan followed by the execution. Developing the strategy and plan is a process, there are many things that go into the process and many things to consider.
Strategic management involves each level of management and must involve each level in the development of the goals and plans for the organization. Brian Brandt, a business and management consultant and founder of Alibrium LLC, states that “Strategic planning is work that must be led and owned by the leadership team to be successful”. (Brandt, 2013) This applies to each level of management, but starts from the top down. Upper management must be able to not only formulate the future strategy of the organization, but they have to be able to sell that strategy to middle management and get their buy-in. Middle management then has to do the same thing and convince the first-line managers who will ultimately drive the organization’s strategy on a day-to-day basis. Each level must have commitment and ownership.
Upper management will develop the strategic goals and plans for the organization. These goals will be long-term and will be centered on the overall direction and objectives of the organization. When developing these goals,...