How many times have you heard that a company’s strategic plan is collecting dust on the shelf? I just heard it again – thankfully this time, the senior staff know that they don’t want to produce another place-holder on the shelf. They know that they need to focus on implementation, and they need to develop a workplan for ongoing check-ins on their progress. They understood their mistake in not focusing on implementation – and they needed someone to explain that to them.
Sometimes companies don’t know what they don’t know – so they hire someone to facilitate the strategic planning process, without realizing that this generates a change management process, and that they might need ongoing assistance with change management. At the same time, it’s incumbent on us consultants to make this clear – strategic planning is just one piece of a longer process, and the company really needs to pay attention to managing the change. That includes project management, managing the people side of change, and a communications plan, that says who needs to be kept informed of our progress, what they need to know, and how often they need to be updated.
If we help companies manage the change and implementation, they’ll have more room on their shelves – for the books that we recommend, or that we write!