Strategic Planning: Assess Your Business and Its Capabilities - dummies

Strategic Planning: Assess Your Business and Its Capabilities

By Erica Olsen

Understanding how your company’s resources, capabilities, and processes are used to grow the organization is critical to successfully executing your strategy, growing your company, and ultimately making it sustainable. Often, pinpointing all the things that need to come together to move a company forward is difficult.

Imagine you’re setting out on a road trip. You hop on Google Maps or turn on your GPS to select the quickest route from your home to your destination. With your trip plan in mind, you consult your friend because he traveled that road before.

After you’re feeling good about your route, you check your resources against your trip plan to make sure that you have enough time and gas to get there. Then, you assess your fuel-efficient SUV to ensure that it’s in working condition and that you’ve loaded up your most recent podcasts to your iPod. You pack your bags and invite two friends because they’re fun to have around.

Sound familiar? This situation may seem too methodical, but more than likely, you went through all those steps before you headed out on the road. Mapping a strategic plan is just the same: Your company needs a road map or plan to make the strategic plan work

  • How does being on your SUV feel? How it feels on the SUV is your company culture — teamwork, leadership, and climate for action.

  • Are the right people on your SUV and in the right seats? Are you keeping them there? The SUV passengers are your employees, and the seats represent their skills and capabilities.

  • What type of SUV are you driving? The type of SUV you drive indicates your operations — lean and mean or clunky and gas-guzzling.

  • Does your SUV run with the right amount of fuel so you have something left over for your shareholders? This fuel is your profit margin, which indicates how well you use your resources to get where you want to go.