Why have a strategic plan?

My teenage son taught me about Quest Objectives in gaming.  As you move from one challenge to another in some video games, there is information that pops up telling you what your next quest objective is:  

• Rescue the pot of gold.  

• Transport the equipment.

• DO THE THING.

Wouldn’t it be nice if, as we lead our organizations in dynamic environments, we had a quest objective pop upon our screen to guide our steps, big and small?

That is what a well-designed and executed strategic plan is.

A strategic plan is the framework for an organization to make meaningful and deliberate progress on its mission.   It provides a sense of direction and outlines measurable goals.  Whether it covers one, three or five years into the future, a strategic plan can help guide your organization to meet the challenges that lie in wait.

The path taken to develop a strategic plan is as critical as the end-product itself.  Developing the plan is intended to answer the question, “of all of the things we could do, what SHOULD we do?”

• For some organizations that are grappling with chaos, the plan will include a very specific approach with a detailed workplan of steps to take.  

• For other organizations, the plan is much broader and is designed to sharpen the organization’s focus in order to reach the agreed upon shared destination.  

Having an organizational sense of what success looks like assures that all team members are on the same page, pulling toward the same outcome.  With a concise strategic plan in hand, every decision-maker in the organization has something to turn to as they make day-to-day decisions or as they formulate next critical next steps. A strategic plan is the rudder that steers the ship toward success.

Building a strategic plan requires a commitment to honesty about where you are as an organization and where you want to go.  Successful plans are based on an openness to feedback from across and beyond the organization.  Are you ready?  SS&C Solutions can work with you to build and execute on a strategic plan.  Contact us today.

By Erika Dvorske, SS&C Solutions COO