The six principles below are incorporated into our platform’s methodology to effectively Drive Strategy™ in the most efficient manner.
Objective: Regardless of any client’s particular set of circumstances, our platform is designed to be completely objective and customizable. The platform supports world-class planning and execution enabling you to have your very own outstanding strategic plan which is custom written for your unique situation.
Insightful: LightStance fosters open and focused discussions centered around the values, vision, and mission unique to each client. These strategic insights are the catalyst that shifts the trajectory of our client’s success, allowing them to achieve more than they ever thought possible. These discussions must be continuous in order to find new opportunities, concerns, and actions that can increase the depth of understanding and uncover difficult-to-find insights.
Flexible: Life never goes exactly to plan. This platform and process are both flexible and efficient to update, enabling you to tweak or revamp your plan as needed. The platform focuses teams and individuals to develop the overall strategy and make certain that progress is constantly being made towards their future vision and goals.
Engaging: The process is supported by materials and techniques that foster individual & team engagement based on concepts like gamification, kinetic learning, and discussion pedagogy. The advanced design delivers powerful results because we leverage human nature’s strengths rather than force what is unnatural and off-putting.
Focused: In order to have the greatest impact, we must concentrate time, energy and resources on the most important objectives that drive efficient and impactful improvement. All content is connected to values, goals, opportunities, concerns (risks), and commitments (projects). All of these essential factors are then prioritized based on impact, time, cost and or likelihood of occurrence/success. This system leaves zero room for guessing and allows you to know when and what to do… and maybe more importantly, what not to do.
Efficient: The process is extremely efficient at delivering effective plans quickly. The speed and agility of the platform save a tremendous amount of time and cost throughout the planning phase. Since strategy is useless without execution, the platform also supports efficient execution and updating of the strategic plan. Additionally, there is an advanced report generation based on real-time data that enter the program, so you will always have an updated plan at your fingertips.
7 Step Process for Strategic Planning & Execution
1. Define Direction
Before you delve into the specifics, it’s important to determine where you want to go, either as an organization or as an individual. And in order to do that, you’ll need to clearly define, refine and or review your Values, Vision, and Mission.
- Your values are the guiding principles that empower you and others to make the right decisions over a lifetime.
- Your vision is where you hope to see yourself or your organization in 3-5 years.
- Your mission defines the purpose, or driving force, of your business or life.
2. Establish SMART Goals
Once the Values, Vision, and Mission are well understood, it’s time to establish the SMART goals that will build your vision.
- SMART Goals = Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Oriented
- These goals should be large enough to make the vision become a reality, while also detailed enough to meet the SMART criteria.
- Many organizations and individuals work on goal-setting every year, or even every quarter. At LightStance, we’re here to help enhance that goal-setting process, providing you with the materials needed to set clear, complete goals, and to share them widely within your organization or stakeholders, drastically improving the likelihood of success.
3. Identify & Prioritize Key Opportunities
Once you’ve outlined your SMART goals, you’ll identify and prioritize opportunities based on positive impact potential. An opportunity is a potential action or series of actions that you can take, based on a specific set of current circumstances, that could produce a positive impact. Opportunities that align with your SMART goals should be prioritized, as they enable you to realize your vision and support your values and mission.
4. Identify & Prioritize Key Risks & Concerns
Risks are just as important as opportunities, as they can delay or possibly prevent you from achieving your goals and realizing your vision. It’s important to identify and address risks up front in order to minimize impact and create balance in your strategy.
5. Identify & Prioritize Key Projects & Commitments
Utilizing your inventory of risks and opportunities, you’re in a position to define and prioritize SMART projects that you will execute in order to realize your team’s goals, build your vision, and improve your cash position.
- SMART Projects = Scope, Metrics, Accountability (Project Champion and Project Manager) Resources (Human and Financial), and Time-Based Deliverables (Milestones).
- This is an iterative process — each time you execute your projects, a new round of planning begins and a grander vision is created.
Once you’ve prioritized and selected the projects you will implement, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get things done. Here are the key components for project execution success:
- Multiple projects running concurrently: In order to maximize your ROI, 3-5 projects should be active at one time, dependent upon scope and resources of course.
- Accountability calls: a regular cadence of accountability calls is crucial for project success. These calls should include the leadership team, stakeholders, project champions, and project managers to provide updates and support where needed.
- Project inventory at the ready: As active projects are completed, teams should be aware of the next priority in the project inventory. This should be a regular topic of discussion on accountability calls.
7. Recognize & Repeat
You’ve achieved your goals, you’ve executed your plan, and your vision is now a reality. Take this time to celebrate that success with your team — recognize lessons learned and achievements made. And look forward to another cycle of strategic improvement utilizing these same six steps.
At LightStance, our goal is to enable you to devote 100% of your attention and energy to content and the quality of the strategic plan and the execution the plan. We do that by removing the challenges that traditionally come with manual planning methods and more traditional practices. Our materials (discussion decks and strategy mats), combined with our robust software, streamline idea generation, discussion, and report generation, which would otherwise become cumbersome and time-consuming using manual processes.
- Reduced Complexity: Our comprehensive platform simplifies and streamlines plan building and execution.
- Ease of Use: We’re putting powerful, user-friendly tools at your fingertips in order to expedite the creation and execution of your plan.
- Step-by-Step Support: You’ll walk through this journey feeling confident at each step, knowing that LightStance is there to help you take ownership of and gain control of the process.