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The Best Laid Strategic Plans

Nick Pollice, Sarah Kaplan, and Eric Beinhocker

Read Nick's full bio here.

The goal of long - term planning is not to strategize but; to prepare key minds to make sound decisions.

Background.

Most companies invest a significant amount of time and effort in a formal annual strategic planning process but, many executives see little benefit from the investment. One manager told us, "our planning process is like a primitive tribal ritual; there is a lot of dancing, waving of feathers and beating of drums. No one is exactly sure why we do it but, there is an almost mystical hope that something good will come out of it." Another said, "it's like the old communist system. We pretend to make strategy and they pretend to follow it."

Management thinker Henry Mintzberg has gone so far as to label the phrase Strategic Planning an oxymoron. He notes that real strategy is made informally, in hallway conversations, in working groups and in quiet moments of reflection on long plane flights, even on the golf course but, rarely in the panelled conference rooms where formal planning meetings are held.

To continue reading, please download the PDF article.

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  • "  The Instructor was great with real life experiences. The course offered good information and concepts that I can take home and use immediately.  "

  • "  Way more interesting/informative than I expected  "

  • "  It has met and exceeded my expectation and for a new manager. This course was great.  "

  • "  A big part was our instructor, Susan. She was extremely knowledgeable and had great teaching skills. She certainly helped clear up a lot of questions I had and made the course much more interesting.  "

  • "  Thank you John for sharing your knowledge, experiences and allowing us to share ours. Invaluable experience!  "

    Paolo Tuscano
    Canada Post Corporation

  • "  The course was highly interactive. Everybody was engaged and involved. It also addressed many real world situations.  "

  • "  Most importantly, the course gave an overview of the role project management has within an organization. It provided ideas of how to breakdown a project into bite-sized steps.  "

  • "  Excellent, very participative group, good techniques & learning.  "

    David Fitzke
    Delta Dental Plan Michigan

  • "  Lots of practical examples - knowledgable resource  "

  • "  I enjoyed how the facilitator adapted the course to the needs of participants while still achieving the objectives.  "