Strategic Planning, Phase 4: Cascade Your Strategies to Operations - dummies

Strategic Planning, Phase 4: Cascade Your Strategies to Operations

By Erica Olsen

Cascading action items and to-dos for each short-term goal in your strategic plan is where the rubber meets the road — literally. Moving from big ideas to action (cascading) happens when strategy is translated from the organizational level to the individual. This point is also when the planning circle widens, and departments and individual contributors join in and develop their short-term goals and actions to support the organizational direction.

Fundamentally, in Phase 4 you move from planning the strategy to planning the operations and from strategic planning to annual planning. This phase can seem just as confusing, so understanding how all the parts of a plan work together makes it less confusing.

That said, the only way to execute strategy is to align resources and actions from the bottom of the organization (individual team members) to the top (the CEO) to drive your vision.

The duration of this phase is estimated at four to six weeks. During this time, you answer the following business questions:

  • How are we going to reach our vision at a functional level?

  • Who must do what by when to accomplish and drive the organizational goals?