What will you discuss when you meet for the first time with your new strategic planning team?
Background. You have been assigned a critical job by your organization, a computer intensive organization employing 1,000 technologists and enjoying a budget or annual sales of 500 million pesos. Your new job is to manage a team to develop a strategic plan for your ministry/company. This is a great honor signifying that the top people have trust in your abilities and that you are scheduled for bigger things in the organization.
Each of the 10 divisions in the entire organization will assign an individual to work full time with you for the duration of the strategic planning program.
Your job. In answering question 1, please prepare the presentation you will use when you first meet with your new strategic planning team. You know they will have many questions and you try to anticipate as many of them as possible. During you presentation, you need to show them you know the subject, you are a leader, and you can excite them.
Like all members of any group, they will silently be asking themselves as you talk. “What’s in it for me?’
You realize that the team members will be evaluating you as you conduct the first meeting so you need to prepare accordingly.
Examples of questions that the new team members could ask.
Where will we work? Will there be office space for all members of the team? Will we each have separate offices?
Will we have an adequate budget to include the possible need to hire consultants, and to travel to visit leading organizations that have important experience in developing strategic plans?
Then, what issues will we need to address as we develop the strategic plan. These can be issues internal to our organization or they can be issues external to our organization. The Group 3 backcasting group did a good job on March 22 identifying external issues.
How will we work to develop the strategic plan? In smaller groups? Or in the entire group?
Are the top bosses on board and fully supportive?
How will our performance appraisals, bonuses, and pay raises be handled while we are working on the plan.
How will we sell our ideas to the bosses, the top level managers in the company?
Advice on how to proceed. To provide material for your presentation, consider the following sources.
The fundamental issues in Strategic Planning we discussed in our January classes,
The technology changes we discussed in February,
The brainstorming and backcasting approaches we used in class in March. the strategic planning implementation issues we discussed in our final classes; and,
Most important, provide your own insights.
Remember, there are no wrong answers, but there must be depth and many personal observations in your response. You are the team leader. You need to demonstrate that you are a leader and that you have thought out the way that the group needs to proceed to develop a quality strategic plan to move the organization into the modern age.
As the manger of a Strategic Planning team, you know that most Strategic Planning projects fail to excite and many reports languish on a dusty shelf in a dark room. How will you ensure that your strategic planning report excites and is implemented? Here are nine typical challenges that can hurt an S.P. program. How will you handle these?
Some team members are loyal to their division’s program and continually try to get the team to support their home program and not the goals of the organization as a whole.
Others want to focus on what they think is strategic planning, but is actually tactical planning, a lower art form.
Cliques begin to form between certain members in the group which support every comment by members in the informal group and reject suggestions by team members not in their clique.
Employees, not on the Strategic Planning team are making public comments that the Strategic Planning process is a joke and that the bosses really don’t care if a product is ever produced. They say that the bosses simply want to be able to tell the Board of Directors that there is a Strategic Planning process underway.
Most of the team members have little idea of emerging technology and can only suggest “more of the same” versus taking the big steps forward needed by the organization.
Most of the team members feel that their organization will survive forever by doing what it has always been doing not realizing that similar companies have gone out of business in recent years, despite decades of prior success. Within government, some ministries have lost favor with president and the legislators because of outdated programs that do not contribute to the direction the nation needs to take.
Some of your bosses and some board members do not feel the need for significant change. Some have told you privately that they have been doing it right for years, why not continue doing it? Yet, you, as the team leader, know that other ministries/companies in related fields have completely changed their way of doing business in recent years.
The movement toward mobility, especially the use of smart phones and tablets is not understood by some members of the team, or by some higher level bosses, and by some board members. They view mobility as unnecessary. After all, “our secretaries take care of that stuff,” they have said proudly, again and again.
Advanced tools like data mining, data discovery, cloud computing will be important to the organization in the future but they are poorly understood by many and viewed with concern because of the Edward Snowden revelations about USA spying on everyone including heads of countries.
In summary, you, as a fast rising star destined for bigger things in your ministry/company, have an opportunity to gain the respect of all in your organization.
To address these nine problems, build on the material in the class lectures, in the collective intelligence discussions, and in the brainstorming and backcasting group exercises. These, plus your own experiences, insights, and imagination will help you to handle the problems that typically emerge in Strategic Planning programs.
Please provide depth in each answer along with your own insights
Manage your way to success in your government assignments