From Rob’s Desk: Unsuccessful Strategic Plans Outnumber Successful Ones

If you’re just starting to develop your strategic plan for 2022, you’re cutting it a little close. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to add to your stress. I’m just being completely real with you.

You should really start this thing a little earlier next year.

Ready for a little more honesty? Most strategic plans fail.

By most, I mean 67%, according to statistics. What does failure look like? It doesn’t mean brands disappear or go out of business. It means they don’t reach their goals, which means they’re also not achieving their potential — some, by a longshot.

It could manifest in different ways, across different departments. It could also mean a company continually faces the same challenges, year after year.

Will the strategic plan you developed months ago fail this year? You should know by now, as the end of the year approaches.

As an entrepreneur, I’ve been there. And as someone who works with business executives, owners and leaders to develop practices that improve revenue generation and operational efficiencies, I see it happen to others every day.

It means you’re not alone. It helps to know that.

Most business leaders don’t even believe the strategic plans they develop will succeed. Isn’t that a shame? I’ll answer that — yes, it is. Maybe that’s why some (not naming names or pointing fingers here) wait until the last minute to develop one.

Just a theory.

Before you crumple up that plan you’re working on and toss it in the trash, please know that strategic plans don’t fail for lack of vision or ingenuity. They fail, most often, due to a missing link down the line.

When you look at a strategic vision, imagined at 30,000 feet above the daily operations of any given business, it begins as a crystal clear mission but it can become increasingly grainy as it finds its way to the ground. Adoption and execution become the missing links.

It’s why, when I work with CEOs and other business leaders, we unpack everything. We work top to bottom. We get inside an operation, sift through every department, examine internal and external communications, analyze data and take a deep dive into process. It’s the only way to target pain points, uproot inefficiencies and carve out new paths that lead to revenue growth, efficiencies and allow an organization to actualize its potential — from a financial and operational perspective.

What if your company could make a bigger impact? What if it could make a more meaningful one?

It all starts with the strategic plan, developed with support from actionable data, and it isn’t finished until it is disseminated throughout an entire organization — from customer service to IT to HR, finance, marketing and beyond.

Everyone, everywhere needs to be on board in the same way leadership is. If they are, that vision that can become grainy maintains its clarity.

Need guidance with your strategic plan? We’ll help, no matter what time of year it is.