Best Way To Achieve Your Goals? Create a Strategic Plan
By: Dennis Sherrin
One of the greatest tools we’ve used at hb&k to spur focused growth is creating and following a Strategic Plan. Here at hb&k, we seek to grow and improve every day. But years ago, that was not the case. We used to be so focused on the here-and-now that we neglected to think of the future. But as we grew, so did our crazy work schedules. We realized in order to handle more growth, our firm and its operating philosophy needed an update and a plan for the future.
We sought the advice of experts in our profession and the very first project we completed was to create a Strategic Plan for our firm. This plan, and the subsequent annual plans, are the primary drivers of future-focused decision making and growth for our firm.
Benefits of a Strategic Plan
Creating a written Strategic Plan has benefits to any organization regardless of size. Here are some positive outcomes of taking the time to develop a simple, one-page, Strategic Plan:
Set Ambitious Goals
- Establish written goals and expected actions necessary to make progress on those goals
- Create and set priorities for objectives to pursue the completion of these goals
- Focus on crucial objectives that are most important to your organization
Create a Better Team
- Grow your organization’s talent, capability, knowledge and finances
- Everyone works toward common goals
- Create a one-firm philosophy
- Enhance self-accountability of the team
- Connect your team to the plan for increased engagement
Gain a Game Plan for Action
- Establish expected outcomes and measures to monitor progress
- Guide and shape the culture of your entire organization
- Focus on future
- Proactively plan to manage your future rather than reacting
Engage hb&k to Assist in Developing your Strategic Plan
When finished, a Strategic Plan is a one-page guide. It may seem to be a simple project, but in order to create a plan that leads you on a path to reap the benefits listed above, you need a consultant. hb&k is prepared to assist you in the development of your Strategic Plan. We have been working with consultants for many years to create our Strategic Plans and have developed the expertise to guide you through yours. The reason you need a consultant is two-fold.
First, you need someone from outside of your organization who can be an impartial guide. An hb&k consultant will take the time to get to know your organization, its critical team members, its markets and your preliminary long-term dreams. Our role will be to support every voice and sift through the ideas presented while creating your Strategic Plan.
Second, your hb&k consultant will push you out of your comfort zone. A Strategic Planning Session is a future-focused brainstorming experience meant to challenges the current way of thinking and doing. You may not like all that you hear. The collective discussion leads to even better results for your organization.
Continue with Accountability Meetings
Your hb&k consultant will schedule quarterly accountability meetings/calls to check-in. This is key to making progress on your plan. Answering to a person outside your organization will increase your commitment to you Strategic Plan. Additionally, your internal team should meet quarterly to report on their progress on plan objectives they are assigned. This positive focus review highlights the efforts of the team and provides an opportunity to support team members who need more assistance on their assigned objectives.
After year one, it will be time to meet and reflect on the past year’s progress and celebrate. After the short celebration, we will evaluate your current results, establish new future expectations, assess your needs then revise your plan objectives. We will update your plan and keep you moving forward.
hb&k has used strategic planning for exponential results. We help organizations (including CPA firms, professionals, charitable organization and small to medium sized businesses) plan for their future by facilitating strategic planning retreats as part of our consulting division, P40 Consulting. Contact us today to learn more!