Cut Costs and Improve Productivity With Our Free Strategic Planning Template | Process Street


Within the guide The Balanced Scorecard, by David Norton and Robert Kaplan, it’s famous that 90% of organizations fail to execute their pre-set technique.

It is a regarding statistic when you think about that, for a majority of corporations thought-about profitable, an emphasis is positioned on having formal and pre-established methods to tell, handle, and meet their strategic obligations.

On this sense, can we not infer executing enterprise technique = enterprise success?

To bridge this hole between strategic ambition and enterprise efficiency, Course of Road has created a Strategic Planning Template, which you should use – at no cost – instantly!

By executing the steps given on this template you’ll not solely develop good technique, however the supply of this technique can even show profitable.

Click on right here to entry our free Strategic Planning Template!

However to accommodate this template, it’s essential to have a stable understanding of strategic planning itself.

On this article, I’ll focus on what strategic planning is, the completely different strategic planning fashions – with an emphasis on the Cascade Strategic Planning Mannequin -, why strategic planning is essential, and extra.

Click on on the hyperlinks beneath to learn by:

Let’s soar straight to it!

What’s strategic planning?

Strategic planning is a plan to execute enterprise technique.

To know what strategic planning is, let’s break the time period down into its constituent components.

What’s technique?

Technique is the willpower of the essential long-term targets of an enterprise, and the adoption of programs of motion and the allocation of sources obligatory for finishing up these targets.” – Technique and Construction: Chapters within the historical past of commercial enterprise, Alfred D. Chandler

Technique is a plan of motion designed to attain a long-term or an general goal.

You may see how every job strikes down the organizational hierarchy concerning what groups are concerned. It is a key characteristic of the Cascade Strategic Planning Mannequin to will get the entire group concerned to deploy your new technique.

What’s strategic planning?

Strategic planning is an umbrella time period describing the processes used to determine long-term/general targets. A strategic plan explains the place the group going and how the group will get there.

For understanding, consider a strategic plan by way of the next steps:

  1. A company’s mission, imaginative and prescient, and values (general path of the group) is outlined 🧭
  2. Focus concepts and targets are set 💡
  3. Insurance policies, initiatives, and plans are established to attain targets 🚧
  4. Metric measures and KPIs are used to evaluate efficiency 📐
  5. Changes are made as obligatory to remain on observe 🥅

The strategic plan comes with the general marketing strategy, together with advertising and marketing, monetary, and working/administration plans.

Strategic administration vs strategic planning: What’s the distinction between these 2 phrases?

Strategic planning is a time period used extra within the enterprise world, while strategic administration is used more-so within the educational atmosphere – Strategic Administration Perception, Strategic Administration, and Strategic Studying

When researching the time period strategic planning, you might have come throughout one other time period strategic administration.

Strategic administration and strategic planning are 2 separate phrases, regardless of their interchangeable use, which might spike confusion when interested by strategic planning. For that reason, I’ll take the time to outline strategic administration as separate from strategic planning, as regardless of the controversy, refined variations divide the jargon.

Let’s take a look at these variations…

In line with USAID, each strategic administration and strategic planning contain defining and outlining the mission and targets of a corporation. As such, there may be quite a lot of overlap between what the phrases strategic planning and strategic administration embody. By no means-the-less, slight however key variations separate the two aside. These variations have been summarized within the desk beneath (this desk has been tailored from Key Variations, The Distinction Between Strategic Planning and Strategic Administration).

In abstract, strategic administration is broader in scope, protecting the energetic oversight of the strategic planning course of. That’s, strategic administration devises and executes the precise steps to succeed in the targets outlined by the strategic planning course of.

Foundation For Comparability Strategic Planning Strategic Administration
That means Strategic planning units priorities and determines a corporation’s technique with a future-orientated view. Strategic administration is broad in scope and entails a bundle of selections, executed to attain organizational targets set in the course of the strategic planning course of.
Stresses on Making optimum strategic selections Producing strategic outcomes, new markets, new merchandise/applied sciences, and so forth.
Administration By plans By outcomes
Course of Analytical Motion-oriented
Operate Figuring out actions to be taken Figuring out actions to be taken, the people who will carry out the actions, the appropriate time to behave, and the way in which to carry out the motion.

The event of strategic administration as a self-discipline by the years

Strategic planning was born from strategic administration, which was born by defining technique in enterprise.

Earlier than the 1950s/60s, the time period technique was utilized in reference to warfare and politics, however not in enterprise.

Submit-war, many companies started to construct strategic planning features.

My earlier put up, Hoshin Kanri: Acquire a Aggressive Benefit With This Lean Administration Method (Free Template), provides a superb instance of how technique started to claw its approach into the enterprise realm. On this occasion, the strategic planning mannequin Hoshin Kanri was developed in Japan, a mannequin originating from Samurai warfare ⚔️.

Over time, teachers and enterprise leaders developed on strategic administration as a self-discipline, presenting new and improved fashions and theories, of which solely the perfect survived to be in use at this time. Survivors embrace (however should not restricted to):

These frameworks/fashions replicate an elevated concentrate on price, opponents, and clients in enterprise over time.

➡️ I’ve linked the related Course of Road sources within the above record. You’ll want to click on on these hyperlinks and take a look at these helpful sources ⬅️

Why strategic planning is essential

We’re tackling 20-year issues with five-year plans, staffed with two-year personnel, funded by one-year appropriations.” – Harland Cleveland

The above citation sums up why decision-makers in enterprise should plan and handle strategically. And to take action is turning into more and more extra essential, as I’ll clarify.

In each developed and creating worlds, the price of change is speedy. With larger openness within the political and financial environments, along with exponential technological developments.

This speedy change has turn out to be extra distinguished in current instances – in gentle of COVID-19, and because the insistence of responding to our present environmental disaster turns into a precedence.

With this change, there’s a demand for a special set of enterprise views as those utilized in extra secure instances. Setting new enterprise views requires the re-evaluation of a corporation’s technique, to develop new methods. As an example, a extra environmentally aware technique, or methods which are tailored and versatile of their response to international pandemics.

There may be an escalating demand for technique in our present-day unstable enterprise atmosphere.

With a strategic planning course of, you’ll be assessing the present enterprise state of affairs, analyzing the supply of sources, organizational strengths, weaknesses, opponents, and the atmosphere/trade during which you use. This evaluation means you’re extra geared up to answer instability as applicable, making higher selections to reduce enterprise threat.

Along with these larger-scale advantages, strategic planning additionally gives company-specific benefits, as listed beneath.

Strategic planning…

  • Offers a way of path: Strategic planning defines the path you need your group to journey in, by aiding the institution of sensible targets and targets which are in keeping with a corporation’s imaginative and prescient and mission.
  • Will increase productiveness: Having a plan provides concentrate on what issues, and removes potential guesswork. As such, strategic plans create a basis for productiveness enhancements.
  • Will increase sturdiness and monetary success: Firms with an efficient strategic plan in place have superior complete returns for stakeholders.
  • Cuts prices: An efficient strategic plan – just like the one you’ll produce through our Strategic Planning Template – might save your group as much as $1 billion.
  • Introduces a proactive strategy versus a reactive one: A strategic plan allows what you are promoting to remain forward of the change and on prime of your competitors. It permits a given group to profit from potential alternatives that current themselves out there.

The significance of getting a strategic plan in place doesn’t turn out to be extra distinguished till you contemplate what occurs when corporations plan poorly. On this subsequent part, we are going to take a look at real-life examples of enterprise technique gone mistaken.

Strategic planning examples: Strategic planning gone mistaken #1, Iridium

Set off warning: The beneath clip is from the film American Sniper which is rated as certificates 15.

How is the above clip associated to strategic planning?

Effectively, I used to be watching this film a few weeks again – for the 11th time as its considered one of my favorites – and have you learnt what struck me?

Have a watch – what do you assume?

Given by the subheader I’m positive you observed the heavyweight satellite tv for pc telephone Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle makes use of to make a name amid battle.

Wow“, I believed – “Iridium is in Hollywood!”

Regardless of its star efficiency and $5 billion backed funding, Iridium and its wi-fi satellite tv for pc telephones had been quickly sniped out of enterprise.

Clients rejected the excessive handset prices (~$3000) and $5 a minute per-call fees, ensuing within the firm submitting for chapter in 1999.

With a strategic plan to repeatedly assess whether or not or not targets are happy, Iridium might have foreseen the rise of smaller and cheaper cell telephones – transmitting utilizing land-based towers – and responded appropriately.

Strategic planning examples: Strategic planning gone mistaken #2, eBay


Regardless of bringing in ~$10.75 billion in 2018, eBay hasn’t grown into its present-day success with out challenges.

On the 10th birthday, the web public sale website merged with the video-chat utility Skype. This merger was thought to spice up eBay’s buyer worth. Nevertheless, Skype’s worth dropped that means eBay took on $1.four billion in write-offs and different fees. The losses triggered eBay to chop 10% of its workforce in 2008.

If eBay had an efficient strategic planning course of, might this error of judgment have been averted?

Probably. What is understood that strategic planning locations emphasis on the continuous evaluate of efficiency towards set targets. This implies misalignment between expectations vs actuality will be caught earlier than a corporation operates alongside an incorrect trajectory for too lengthy.

What are strategic planning fashions?

A strategic planning mannequin provides steering and construction for the profitable execution of technique through a strategic plan. A strategic planning mannequin takes into consideration the supply of enterprise sources, while assessing the interior and exterior environments during which the corporate operates.

On this sense, the time period strategic planning encompasses strategic planning fashions, however this inclusion shouldn’t be unique.

The three ideas of strategic planning

Strategic planning as a self-discipline comes from the broader educational follow named strategic administration, which originated from strategic administration within the 1950s/60s.

Since its inception, educational and practising managers have developed quite a few fashions and frameworks for strategic decision-making processes. These fashions have in mind the complexities that include a repeatedly altering enterprise panorama.

A strategic planning mannequin usually consists of:

The Strategy Model

All three ideas – framework, construction, and governance – are very important for a strategic planning course of. For that reason, at Course of Road we advocate you choose a strategic planning mannequin that accommodates all three ideas. With plenty of fashions on the market, this narrows choices down for you.

1 prime strategic planning mannequin it is best to contemplate is the Hoshin Kanri methodology. For this mannequin, learn my earlier article: Hoshin Kanri: Acquire a Aggressive Benefit With This Lean Administration Method (Free Template). My article tells you every part it’s essential to learn about Hoshin Kanri. To implement this strategic planning mannequin, use our Hoshin Planning: Hoshin Kanri Coverage Deployment Course of Guidelines, embedded beneath.

Click on right here to entry our Hoshin Planning: Hoshin Kanri Coverage Deployment Course of Guidelines at no cost!

Switching our focus from the Hoshin Kanri methodology, we transfer ahead on this article and switch our consideration to a different prime strategic administration mannequin, the Cascade Strategic Planning Mannequin.

This mannequin is easy sufficient to grasp, and might simply be carried out to execute what you are promoting technique. Utilizing the cascade strategy, your company technique is communicated all the way down to the useful stage, giving a large amount of readability in your groups. Seeing actions that should occur at their stage, and the way that exercise connects again to the general plan is important for organizational alignment.

As soon as extra – just like the Hoshin Kanri strategy – the Cascade Strategic Planning Mannequin is:

  1. Not too sophisticated: Customers of the mannequin don’t get misplaced in jargon. The mannequin focuses on execution and due to this fact removes pointless complexities.
  2. Scalable: The mannequin will be utilized to each small and enormous organizations.
  3. Is versatile: This one is fairly self-explanatory. The mannequin is adaptable and can be utilized in numerous conditions/circumstances.
  4. Is tangible and measurable: Success is measured utilizing Key Efficiency Indicators (KPIs).

For these causes, I like to recommend you contemplate each the Hoshin Kanri strategy alongside the Cascade Strategic Planning Mannequin and see which mannequin works greatest for you. We have already got a devoted article on Hoshin Kanri – talked about above – so for this article, I focus solely on the Cascade Strategic Planning Mannequin.

You might be supplied with Course of Road’s Strategic Planning Template for the sensible implementation of the Cascade Strategic Planning Mannequin.

Use Course of Road’s Strategic Planning Template to doc your strategic plan

A strategic planning template outlines every step wanted to doc and comply with an supposed organizational path. It tells you how to implement your supposed enterprise technique.

As a result of non-static nature of Enterprise, strategic-management fashions have to be dynamic, with suggestions loops to monitor execution and inform one planning spherical after the subsequent.

As well as, profitable strategic planning entails team-wide effort from a corporation’s inside workforce, exterior distributors, and different exterior folks. That’s, robust communication channels are very important to make sure that targets and techniques are successfully developed and disseminated all through the corporate.

Course of Road’s Strategic Planning Template has been created taking the entire above into consideration. As soon as extra, this template is free and prepared so that you can use instantly.

Our template has been developed utilizing Course of Road’s prime options akin to:

  • Cease duties to make sure job order.
  • Dynamic due dates, so no deadline is missed.
  • Conditional logic, making a dynamic template that caters to your wants.
  • Position assignments, to ease job delegation inside your workforce.
  • Approvals, permitting decision-makers to offer the go-ahead (or rejection) on essential objects. Additionally, the required feedback will be supplied.
  • Activity assignments, to assign customers and teams to particular person duties in your checklists. This makes it simple to see who’s chargeable for what.
  • Embed Widget, permitting you to view and work together with different apps with out leaving your guidelines.

You will note particular examples of how our options add worth to our Strategic Planning Template beneath, so maintain studying. In a basic sense although, these options make our checklists dynamic and adaptable and due to this fact extremely suited to the ever-changing enterprise panorama.

Strategic Planning Template

Strategic Planning Template

Consider our Strategic Planning Template as what you are promoting roadmap and compass, to relocate your company place, main the way in which for enterprise success.

Through the use of this template you’ll shut the hole between your present state and the place you wish to be sooner or later using the Cascade Strategic Planning Mannequin.

Sounds good proper?

Click on right here to entry our Strategic Planning Template!

Strategic plan define: Framework, construction, and governance

Earlier than leaping into our Strategic Planning Template, use this part to familiarize your self with the Cascade Strategic Planning Mannequin by contemplating this mannequin’s strategic plan define.

You will need to perceive the mannequin earlier than making use of it, to stop errors, confusion, and wasted time.

The Cascade Strategic Planning Model

Let’s look at the three ideas – framework, construction, governance – in relation to the Cascade Strategic Planning Mannequin.

Framework ✏:

  • The Cascade Strategic Planning Mannequin is framework agnostic. This implies you’ll be able to apply a number of completely different frameworks that will help you obtain your targets.

Construction 🔧:

  • Identification of your mission assertion: Your mission assertion describes why the group exists. Your mission assertion can evolve.
  • Defining values: Your values describe the way you need your group to behave.
  • Establishing focus areas: Your recognized focus areas outline the enterprise division receiving your centered effort.
  • Creation of targets: Aims element the end result you wish to obtain for every focus space.
  • Defining KIPs: Every goal ought to comprise not less than 2 KPIs. You employ your outlined KPIs to measure whether or not or not you’re near reaching your required end result.
  • Mission specs: Mission specs are the actions you’ll take to ship in your set targets.

Governance 👔:

  • Month-to-month Technique Updates: Efficiency is tracked for every goal to examine efficiency.
  • Mission Updates: Advert hoc updates are made for every undertaking through evaluating undertaking plans with actuality. Mission updates embrace basic updates and progress.
  • KPI Exceptions: When KPIs are exterior the tolerance stage, an evidence is required together with a element of actions to be taken to deal with the hole.

In our Strategic Planning Template, we now have cut up the strategic planning course of into Three phases. To assist your understanding of the Cascade Strategic Planning Mannequin and therefore the way to use our Strategic Planning Template, we are going to work by a hypothetical state of affairs collectively.

Hypothetical state of affairs: You wish to break into the style market with a brand new, sustainable model of clothes. You’re taking second-hand garments, fix-them-up, re-brand them, and promote them on (so like eBay on steroids).

To interrupt into the style trade, you want a technique.

Fortunate you, as you may have signed as much as Course of Road and have full entry to our Strategic Planning Template.

Let’s run a guidelines, and get began together with your strategic plan 👗.

Strategic planning, section 1: The dialogue section

This section is all about gathering info to decipher the place you’re at current. The dialogue section entails speaking with inside and exterior stakeholders, along with conducting trade evaluation.

It’s endorsed that the SWOT framework is used to conduct the trade evaluation wanted. The aim of SWOT evaluation is to look at a corporation, enterprise, or undertaking utilizing the 4 attributes:

  • Strengths
  • Weaknesses
  • Opportunities
  • Threats

Use Course of Road’s SWOT Evaluation Template along with our Strategic Planning Template to make sure you are conducting an intensive trade evaluation as wanted.

Click on right here to entry our SWOT Evaluation Template!

Let’s soar again into our hypothetical instance. We start our strategic plan by documenting the chief abstract. Detailing the chief abstract is essential, as, with this, you can also make comparisons between the place you presently are – detailed within the government abstract – to the place you’re after X years.

On this case, we wish to re-define the style trade, to create an trade with minimal waste and centered across the three R’s – Reuse, Reduce, and Recycle. Coming again to the chief abstract after having adopted our strategic plan will enable progress to be measured towards this mission.

As a result of significance of detailing an government abstract, this can be a cease job that means development within the guidelines can’t be made till an government abstract is documented.

Strategic planning template - image 1

Subsequent, you progress onto defining your organization’s mission, imaginative and prescient, and values. This helps information right strategic path.

Strategic planning template - image 2

The subsequent steps of the dialogue section contain:

  • Figuring out shoppers,
  • Figuring out clients,
  • Figuring out opponents,
  • Describing your trade – which is the style trade on this state of affairs
  • Describing your merchandise,
  • Describing your suppliers,
  • Describing your supply system.

All this info is then communicated to your workforce through workforce conferences.

Right here you may have the choice of utilizing Course of Road’s Embed Widget to ship an e mail reminder to workforce members with info concerning the assembly time and date. Preserve your workforce within the loop with out having to leap from one utility to a different.

Notice: It’s in direction of the tip of the dialogue section the place you’ll open and use Course of Road’s SWOT Evaluation Template.

Strategic planning, section 2: The event section

Within the improvement section, you start placing collectively what you are promoting’s strategic plan. Begin by figuring out your organization’s focus areas. Figuring out focus areas streamlines your consideration stopping your technique to run off on a tangent.


Subsequent, outline your targets and group them as per the associated focus space. You will need to start your targets with a verb to encourage motion.

Strategic planning template - image 4

Below every outlined goal, state the KPIs, along with the related initiatives and targets (with begin dates and deadlines famous). All this info compiled is in essence your plan of motion that may take what you are promoting to the place you need it to be.

Strategic planning, section 3: The evaluate and updating section

The ultimate section of our strategic planning course of is the evaluate and updating section. Start by assigning the person chargeable for reviewing and updating your strategic plan. This task makes use of our job assignments characteristic, notifying the related personnel of their job robotically.

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As you run by the evaluate and updating section, you’re inspired to:

  1. Handle organizational change appropriately: By creating and implementing a brand new strategic plan in your group, you’re introducing enterprise change that must be managed appropriately. That can assist you handle this transformation successfully, Course of Road has created 9 prime change administration mannequin templates, which you’ll entry, at no cost ➡ right here ⬅.
  2. Undertake a steady cycle of examine, plan, do, act: Strategic planning is all about assessing your present standing, analyzing what’s working and what isn’t, and making the modifications as applicable. As an example, it’s possible you’ll miss a given goal earlier than the target deadline. In response, undertake a system that identifies the issue, and guides you to an answer. At Course of Road we advocate you employ our PDCA Cycle Change Administration Mannequin Course of Guidelines for this. Particulars of this guidelines are given beneath.

Our PDCA Cycle Change Administration Mannequin Course of Guidelines provides an iterative four step course of, designed to handle enterprise processes for continuous enchancment. The PDCA mannequin can also be known as the Demming Cycle.

The PDCA Cycle Change Administration Mannequin Course of Guidelines gives a easy and efficient strategy for fixing issues that current themselves when a given goal has not been reached.

The mannequin is greatest used for testing and bettering measures on a small scale, earlier than updating procedures and dealing strategies.

Click on right here to entry our PDCA Cycle Change Administration Mannequin Course of Guidelines!

On the finish of our strategic planning course of, all key info is compiled into your strategic plan abstract. This abstract is reviewed and accredited by the related supervisor earlier than you write up the knowledge into your official and closing strategic plan report.

Strategic planning template - image 6

In your strategic plan abstract, you’ll be able to view your motion plan which particulars your targets together with their related goal particulars. Refer again to this motion plan at any level in the course of the strategic planning course of.

Strategic planning template - image 7

Your strategic plan abstract must be accredited by the related personnel. This may be executed through Course of Road’s approval characteristic. A notification for approval is distributed to the related personnel in your workforce robotically, conserving the entire course of streamlined.

Different strategic planning fashions and how one can implement them through Course of Road

Course of Road is superpowered checklists.

Thus far Course of Road has launched you to 2 prime strategic planning fashions, and our related checklists to go together with them:

Nevertheless, there are extra fashions it is best to contemplate using!

Going into element on every mannequin is past the scope of this text. Nevertheless, I’ve supplied helpful sources that designate these completely different fashions intimately. Take a look by these sources and take into consideration how one can transcribe any considered one of them right into a Course of Road guidelines – as we now have executed for the Hoshin Kanri strategy and the Cascade Strategic Planning Mannequin.

Which mannequin/s you resolve to make use of is personnel to you and what you are promoting/line of labor.

For extra info on how one can create and edit checklists in Course of Road, watch the beneath video: Fundamentals of Creating and Modifying Templates.

Execute an efficient and environment friendly strategic planning course of with Course of Road

Strategic planning is significant to sustaining enterprise success in at this time’s ever-increasingly unstable company atmosphere. Highlighting the failures of Iridium and eBay solely emphasizes this level.

Utilizing Course of Road and our superpowered checklists make the strategic planning course of simple for you. You may transcribe any strategic planning mannequin right into a Course of Road guidelines, at no cost, after you have signed up and created your Course of Road account.

How do you intend strategically for what you are promoting? What mannequin/s have you ever used? Please remark beneath as we might love to listen to from you. Who is aware of, it’s possible you’ll even get featured in an upcoming article!


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