In the June issue of BizTucson, an article titled “Vision is not Enough to Succeed in this Economy” referenced a three-step approach to achieving breakthrough success in this economy:
This approach contributes toward achieving a high-performance culture, like a championship race or sports team.
This article focuses on the first step: Strategy, a long-range plan to achieve future success. The purpose of the strategic plan is to establish a foundation and framework to achieve business objectives, aligned with the business vision, mission and values.
Most strategic plans end up as a binder on a bookshelf or in a shredder after the glow of the strategic offsite has vanished. Successful organizations utilize a proven process: planning, alignment, communications, accountabilities tracked for each key individual, and quarterly leadership follow-up reviews. There is no way a plan developed and deployed with this process and accountabilities can die the normal strategic plan death.
The process of developing the strategic plan is as important to the alignment of the leadership team as the development of the plan itself. The process is a systems approach, identifying ways in which the leadership team can understand and appreciate each member’s unique contribution to the overall success and achievement of the plan. This proven process creates clear alignment from the individual contributor to the leadership team driving the vision.
Three aspects of performance accountability flow to each employee: the business plan, individual goals and competencies for the job. Measuring performance will ensure that employees buy into the business strategy and that their efforts are seen as important to the success of the business. True championship teams appreciate each member’s contributions.
Two local businesses can attribute their championship success to alignment to their strategic plan:
Pima Community College introduced its College Plan in 2006. It continues today and looks long into the future. Chancellor Roy Flores, who focused the college on a vision of success and alignment of the team, has demonstrated that the college is prepared for but resilient to the buffeting effects of the economy.
In a recent intuitional climate study conducted by a national research agency, the community, the faculty and staff, and the students rated PCC as outstanding in terms of its performance, value and return to the community.
• 97 percent of the residents and 98 percent of community leaders surveyed thought PCC provided good value for the tax dollars residents and businesses pay to support the college. PCC rated 50 percentage points above the national average.
• 96 percent of the residents and 100 percent of the community leaders surveyed thought that PCC was important to the overall quality of life in Pima County. You can’t beat 100 percent!
This success can be directly attributed to a focused strategic plan.
Raytheon, Tucson’s largest employer, continues to outperform the competition through a focus on involving employees and customers in a process of strategic alignment. Customer, stakeholder and the employee interests are aligned. Publicly reported performance is its measure of success: bookings, earnings, income and full-year guidance all increased as reported in the latest quarter. Again, aligning strategy to performance is the key to this success.
It’s time for you to prepare your business for the future, develop your long-range plan and align your employees to perform as champions.
For more information, please visit www.cpohr.com