A strategic plan cannot be successful without proper execution

When I first explain to a client the proper way to conduct strategic planning, I often revert back to the example of Eastman Kodak. During a greater part of the 20th century, Kodak held the dominant position in photography. In 1976, they had a 90% market share. However, if they had a strategic plan in place, it was not executed properly. By the late 1990s, Eastman Kodak had lost 75% of their market value due to their inability to strategically plan for the rise in digital photography. In 2012, they filed for bankruptcy. 

How can you avoid this happening to you? Not just through strategic planning, but through proper execution. ASG’s mantra is such: “Strategy without an executable plan is destined for failure.” Listed below are four main reasons your strategic plan is designed to fail.

1. Having a plan just because
Did someone tell you to write a strategic plan? Or are you creating one simply because you know it’s a best practice? If you nodded your head to either question, your plan will likely fail. Developing a strategic plan simply because you think you’re supposed to will leave you with a plan you can’t use and don’t know how to use. A strategic plan takes time. If you’re going to take the time to do it, don’t you want to know the value of it?

2. Writing a plan and moving on
This might be as bad as not writing a plan at all. In order for a plan to be an effective driver of your company’s mission, it must be used, reviewed and revised continuously. Every employee should have a copy of your strategic plan and, with that, a full understanding of its purpose and goals. If an employee has never even heard of your strategic plan, you don’t really have a strategic plan. 

3. Partial commitment
While employees should understand the strategic plan, business owners should live and breathe it. If a business owner is not fully committed to utilizing the strategic plan for both long-term and short-term goals, the plan will not work. Without the business owner or CEO utilizing the plan to drive daily operations, it will be very difficult for others to be on board. If you, as a business owner, are not fully dedicated to the plan that is supposed to direct your business’s success, it will fail. 

4. Inability to adapt to change
Whether you’re a business owner or an employee, you need to be able to adapt to change in order to be successful in business. With that, your strategic plan must be able to adapt to change as well. Had Eastman Kodak developed a strategic plan that would be flexible to changes in market conditions, it may have been able to succeed.

In order to grasp these concepts and ensure your strategic plan will thrive, you need to have a complete understanding of the importance of a strategic plan. What is its purpose? Does it motivate you? Will it motivate others? Creating a strategic plan to sit on your desk and collect dust is ineffective. If you believe in scaling your business, if you believe in proper business training and development for your employees, you must believe in strategic planning. All Systems Grow can help you believe and execute effectively. Call us today to find out how our strategic planning can ensure your business won’t end up like Kodak.

About All Systems Grow

We understand the importance of systems and processes in a successful business. Systems and processes provide a foundation for the company to operate and for its employees to properly function and execute the company’s plans effectively. Sounds boring and incredibly tedious we know, however, we also know the most successful companies operate from systems first. As a matter of fact, effective systems provide the framework for growth! Learn More

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