Business planning can be a long-winded and unrewarding process. When it doesn’t work it is often complex in execution and provides unclear outcomes with plenty of loose ends. People can play lip service to it and when this happens outcomes are usually not communicated to the people they need to be, when they need to be.
Whether you are an established business looking at growth or to develop in new directions or a new start up business needing to reach decisions about commercialisation, business planning activity needs to be relevant, engaging and focused, driving clear outcomes and alignment amongst your team.
Perhaps it is a new team, or you are a new leader for that team. It is important to build a shared focus and also see where the strengths in the team lie. Different people with different experience and views on life, different opinions on the way things should be done, different characters with different talents. Each person probably has unique motivation and, of course, politics can rear its ugly head. Agreeing what WE want and what WE should do first is often a real challenge. Once you think you have agreement, how can you be sure about the level to which individuals are engaged and aligned to the way ahead?
Everyone contributes from his or her own genuine and valuable perspective. Personal agendas are surfaced in a non-threatening way and fully discussed. People own the outcomes and are aligned to them. Focus is clear and achieved quickly.
The Enzyme Accelerated Business Focus process will allow you to achieve this rigorously, effectively and fast.
- The Diagnostic is delivered by the senior client executive. A brief presentation of the key high level facts, trends, business issues which give context to the session. This provides clarity on the nature and size of the challenges that the team must meet.
- The Challenge Ahead is a highly stimulating look at the business using leading models, latest thinking and an external perspective. Challenges team thinking, generates debate and tests some basic assumptions as an energising basis for subsequent sessions.
- Issues, blockages & success factors What are the key issues, blockages (things that could stop us) and success factors (things we must get right). Using a combination of individual workbooks, facilitation, electronic pollling and group working techniques, everyone is given the opportunity to think deeply about the subject then share ideas and consolidate and prioritise them as a group. This provides a much richer and more thoughtful discussion and the process we use ensures equal voice, room to raise the unmentionables in a non-threatening environment and focus. It uses the very best of the Wisdom of Crowds and avoids the very worst of Group Think.
- Opportunities A similar process is followed to identify business opportunities. We add a challenge to estimate the monetary value in years 1, 2 and 3, which provides a powerful reality check.
- Dinner Participants receive summary results from the voting decisions made during the day which prompt informal, honest and insightful discussions in a relaxed atmosphere.
- Key Focus Areas (KFAs) This continues the rigorous prioritisation process where the issues and opportunities are brought together to arrive at three or four KFAs requiring action within a given time frame.
- Strategy 2 Action Using a highly productive methodology, teams are formed to develop action plans for each of the KFAs. This culminates in a presentation to the whole group, where participants comment and confirm their commitment to plans. These plans are developed to the level of a detailed scoping document for a project team.
- Next Steps & Closure Critical steps are identified, owned and timeframes agreed.
- Detailed Report Within a matter of days a detailed report is produced of the proceedings, including all inputs to the day, the individual ideas, consolidated views, voting results and final decision. This documents the entire decision making process and makes communication of the outcomes easy.