Executive support in strategic planning implementation is critical to its success. Executives must lead, support, follow-up, and live the results of the strategic planning implementation process. These are additional ways executive leaders can support the strategic planning implementation process.
See the first part of this article for more ways that leaders can support the strategic planning implementation.
- Pay attention to the planning occurring. Ask how things are going. Focus on progress and barriers for change management. One of the worst possible scenarios is to have the leaders ignore the strategic planning implementation.
- Sponsor portions of the planning or the strategic planning process, as an involved participant, to increase active involvement and interaction with other organization members.
- If personal or managerial actions or behaviors require change for the vision statement, mission statement, values, and goals to take hold in the organization, “model” the new behaviors and actions. (Senior managers must walk the talk.)
- Establish a structure which will support the move to a more strategically thinking and acting organization. This may take the form of a Steering Committee, Leadership Group, Core Planning Team or Guiding Coalition.
- Change the measurement systems, reward, and recognition systems to measure and reward the accomplishment of the new expectations established through the strategic planning process.
- Develop a performance development planning process within your performance management system to communicate, reinforce, and provide a structure that supports the articulation and accomplishment of the strategic planning goals.
- While every person in your organization cannot make their voice heard on every issue within the strategic planning, you must solicit and act upon feedback from other members of the organization. Integral in the strategic planning process must be the commitment of each executive to discuss the process and the plans with staff members.
Too often, I have experienced executives holding information closely and consolidating their own dysfunctional power within the organization at the expense of other company employees feeling – and acting – excluded. (And then they ask: how can I get my staff to “buy-in” to these new expectations?)
- Recognize the human element inherent in any change – the change from reactionary to strategic thinking is a huge leap. People have different needs and different ways of reacting to change. They need time to deal with and adjust to change.
- If training is part of the strategic plan, senior leaders must participate in the training that other organization members attend, but, even more importantly, they must exhibit their “learning” from the sessions, readings, interactions, tapes, books or research.
- Lastly, and of immense significance, be honest and worthy of trust.
Throughout the strategic planning process, treat people with the same respect you expect from them. And you will enjoy the 29% greater return than non-strategic planning companies, predicted earlier. With your vision statement, mission statement, values, strategies, goals, and action plans developed and shared, you'll all win, both personally and professionally.
Want to learn more about developing a strategic culture through strategic planning?
More About Strategic Planning Implementation
- Part 1: Strategy and Vision Statements
- Part 2: Mission Statements
- Part 3: Values and Value Statements
- Part 4: Value Statement Samples
- Part 5: Strategies, Goals and Action Plans
- Achieve Your Dreams: Six Steps to Accomplish Your Goals and Resolutions
- The Awesome Power of Goal Setting—Ten Tips for Triumph