Resources

Strategy Execution: Moving the Plan from Paper to Implementation

Strategic plans often fail due to a lack of focus on implementation.  For all too often, great plans are placed in binders and gather dust on bookshelves, only to be looked at a year later once the time for strategic planning comes around again.

The Key
Question
With your strategic planning effort, would it be helpful if there was a method to ensure that there was execution and follow-through and people were held accountable for success?

 

In the Drivers Model,  phase III of the strategic planning process includes the development of a monitoring and accountability plan.

Phase I
Situation Assessment

Phase II
Strategy Development

Phase III
Implementation

Monitoring and Accountability

We recognize that a full monitoring and accountability process requires four important components: clear assignment, structured monitoring, desirable rewards, and undesirable consequences. Below are a sampling of monitoring and accountability strategies we have helped organizations implement.

  • Assign objectives and strategies to departments and have those departments include these elements in their plans and budgets.
  • Establish SPAN charts which indicate levels of involvement in the strategic priorities by indicating who “supervises, participates, approves, or must be notified” for each.
  • Review the status of strategies monthly based on percent complete and likelihood of meeting the scheduled timeframe.
  • Review the status of objectives quarterly based on progress to date and likelihood of achieving the target in the timeframe.
  • Implement a monthly dashboard of indicators for monitoring progress.
  • Establish an annual award fund shared only by those teams that complete their targeted strategies.  If eights teams are successful, those team members share in the fund.  If only one team is successful, that team gets the entire fund.
  • Tie a portion of executive compensation to the achievement of all of the strategic objectives.  This increases accountability to the team results not just an executive’s particular area.
  • Implement the “accountability dice” as potential consequences for teams falling behind.  Appropriate consequences vary widely from organization-to-organization.  As examples, some have been relatively trivial (e.g., clean-up the break room for a week), some have been time-focus (e.g., assist another team for 2-hours), and some have been monetary (e.g., pay $20 to the party pool).

If you would like assistance in developing your strategic plan, you may be interested in our meeting facilitation services.

About the Author

Michael Wilkinson is the Managing Director of Leadership Strategies – The Facilitation Company and author of  The Secrets of Facilitation and The Secrets to Masterful Meetings.  He is a Certified Master Facilitator and a much sought after strategic planning facilitator and speaker.