Strategic planning is an essential part of running a business, but teams often do their planning once and figure that’s all they need to do. A better way to engage in strategic planning is to do so on an ongoing basis, which is more effective than planning once and then never revisiting the plan to see how it’s working.
Here are some reasons why strategic planning should not be a one-time event.
1. Goals are easy to forget.
Using the once-and-done planning model may seem to make sense, but goals don’t necessarily stay on our minds automatically once the planning is finished. Reviewing your plan periodically throughout the planning period will keep those goals fresh in mind so you stay on track to meet them.
2. Measuring progress will help you make adjustments.
Planning isn’t much good without measuring your progress to see whether your goals are being met and how fast you are getting there. With multiple strategic planning sessions, you will be able to spend some time measuring your progress and evaluating how to move forward even more successfully.
3. Planning sessions facilitate communication.
If everyone is expected to work together to move the company forward, communication is required to make sure everyone is on the same page and is aware of the goals that have been set. Leaders involved in the planning have an important role in helping others understand the company goals and how each person can do their part to reach them.
4. Planning can fix problems before they cause damage.
When you continuously plan company strategy, problems and potential pitfalls begin to reveal themselves. When you are attuned to what the company is doing, you can see what’s happening very early on and course-correct before damage is done. At the very least, you can minimize the damage and get things going in the right direction again quickly.
5. Regular planning leads to positive change.
Even better than catching problems early, regular planning sessions increase the likelihood of making positive changes that can lead to high levels of growth and greater effectiveness for the company overall. Without considering what changes might need to be made, it’s fairly unlikely that leaders will be able to implement the changes that will be best for the company.
6. Planning keeps creativity flowing.
Strategic planning is a creative process, and regular strategy sessions will keep key leaders at their creative peak so that the best ideas can move forward and benefit the business or organization. Creativity was most likely responsible for most of the company’s success when it first started, and creativity can bring success in the future as well when it is nurtured.
CCSU’s Strategic Planning course emphasizes the importance of regular strategic planning sessions and teaches business leaders how to conduct effective planning sessions that lead to long term success for the company. View our open courses to see how you can keep learning and developing professionally.