Strategic Planning Examples

Theories about how long a strategic plan should be are wide and varied. Some consultants espouse a simple, one-page plan, while others don’t feel the job is done unless the plan fills several two-inch-thick three-ring binders. Successful Internet retailer Amazon.com, for instance, has a strategic plan that is 70 pages long. Oftentimes, the bigger the organization means the lengthier the plan, but there is really no rule of thumb for the appropriate length of a strategic plan. [i] Regardless of how long you think your plan should be, we can still offer some great strategic planning examples to help you draft a strategic plan.

Strategic Planning Examples: Prepare

First, you should decide who is going to sit on the planning team or committee. The planning committee should include the chief officers of the organization, the directors of each department, stakeholders, and a person to compose and implement the plan (the committee chair, usually an administrator within the organization). This is not a firm rule; when setting up your planning committee, you can include whomever you choose. When studying various strategic planning examples, you will find that many organizations prefer a diverse crowd, including employees, supervisors, students and alumni (if an educational organization), or volunteers (if a non-profit organization). Above all, the planning committee should be knowledgeable about the strengths of the organization, as well as the issues it faces on a daily basis, and they should have the organization’s best interests at heart.

Strategic Planning Examples: Analysis

Prior to writing the first draft of the plan, the organization as a whole needs to be analyzed. Don’t have any specific strategic planning examples to follow? Below is a sampling of questions you should be prepared to answer during the early stages of the planning process: [ii]

  • What is the purpose of this organization?
  • What are our strengths and weaknesses?
  • What opportunities exist for growth?
  • How are we going to get to where we want to be?

AchieveIt’s cloud-based software moves from strategic planning examples to real strategy development and execution management by  including many online tools that enable organizations to assess the current environment, including a strategic themes assessment, internal capabilities gap, external PESTEL analysis, and a SWOT analysis. These tools, part of AchieveIt’s Execution Flywheel methodology, provide quantification of internal and external capabilities, while also addressing the constraints the organization must respond to in the near future. The software even includes a strategic change agenda that enables organizations to convert the strategic business intelligence gathered by the planning team into a blueprint for strategic and operational plans. Additional strategic planning examples and tools can be found in our resource center.

Strategic Planning Examples: What Is In a Strategic Plan?

Once the analysis is complete, the committee should work toward drafting written statements to define the company’s mission, values, and vision – if they don’t already exist. The mission statement defines the organization’s purpose, while the vision statement should outline what the company wants to be. In addition, writing down the values helps to define the standards and ethics that govern the culture of the organization. The company will then need to articulate the following, and any strategic planning examples you use as a guide should include these items as well:

  • Goals
  • Objectives
  • Strategies
  • Tactics

The goals should demonstrate the desired long-term results the company would like to see within a set period of time, while the objectives break down the goals into measurable and quantifiable one- to three-year targets. Strategies and tactics articulate specific actions to achieve the objectives.

Goals, objectives, strategies, and tactics serve as the backbone of your strategic plan. Each of these four plan components serve a different purpose, and so the four must all be treated as separate. You cannot combine strategies with tactics, or objectives with strategies. They all need to stand alone as stepping-stones to achieving the vision. Once strategies and tactics are in place, they will need to be assigned to individuals within the organization.

How AchieveIt Provides Strategic Planning Examples

AchieveIt’s cloud-based software is built on the six-phase design of Focus, Plan, Align, Forecast, Monitor, and Report – which is a design that sits atop most strategic planning examples. It includes a suite of tools that allow organizations to gather strategic business intelligence to Focus its plan, flexible plan design templates to build results- and action-oriented plans, the ability to cascade assignments to individuals, automatic plan ROI calculations, scorecards and dashboards, and point-and-click reporting.

Footnotes

[i] http://www.scribd.com/doc/24854038/Amazon-Strategic-Plan
[ii] http://gisr07.hubpages.com/hub/Organizational-Strategic-Plan-Elements-and-Examples

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