In this article, I’m going to share with you an easy to implement, three step strategic planning system in just ten minutes.  A system that will help you quickly and reliably achieve the results, you’re accountable for regardless of your industry, or position within your organization.  

Traditional strategic planning systems leaders rely upon were developed decades ago, and have not improved to match today’s rapidly changing, results driven workplace.   They are too complicated and do not reliably, if ever, produce the required outcomes leaders like you are accountable for. 

Strategy Execution PRO

For the past 30 years, I’ve worked with hundreds of leaders to successfully implement our three-step, Strategy Execution PRO system.  Using our system, over 60 clients have been recognized as role model organizations winning local, state, national, and international awards for performance excellence within their industry.  To begin, let me first share a quick overview of our three step, Strategy Execution PRO system. 

Step 1 – strategy development is where you will create a one page, strategy scorecard that includes a balanced set of strategic goals and objectives, and performance measures aligned to each.

Step 2 – Strategy Execution is where you will deploy your strategy scorecard by creating department levels scorecards, and align key workforce systems necessary to successfully achieve your key outcomes.

Step 3 – Strategy Improvement, is where you will conduct monthly strategy scorecard meetings to review your performance results – celebrate successes – and close performance gaps to quickly achieve the results your accountable for. 

With the understanding of our three-step system, next, I’m going to show you how to develop and execute this system with your team in just 10 minutes as promised! 

Step 1 Strategy Development 

In this step you will create a one page, strategy scorecard that includes a balanced set of strategic goals and strategic objectives, performance measures and target levels aligned to each. The purpose of the strategy scorecard is to formally document in writing – exactly what you and the team you lead are accountable for achieving and a simple method to track your progress.  

This document is not intended to be your public facing document you share with to your key external stakeholders. Instead, it’s a tool to organize the key outcomes you’re responsible for, and a simple method to track your progress at achieving them.  Across the top of the strategy scorecard are 7 column headers. 

  1. Your Strategic goals 
  2. Strategic objectives 
  3. Performance measures 
  4. Monthly and YTD cells to record your performance 
  5. Target levels 
  6. Challenges 
  7. Actions.

Click here to download a copy of our strategy scorecard, excel template, you can customize and improve to meet your unique needs.  

Strategic Goals & Objectives

The document is blank except for the first column – strategic goals. Here I’ve filled in for you the foundational pillars all successful strategic plans include – a balanced set of four strategic goals – a finance, workforce, operations, and customer strategic goals – to ensure you have a balanced, 360-degree view – to access the overall health of the areas you are responsible for leading.  

Next begin filling in the second column – strategic objectives by first starting at the top with the customer strategic goal – by identifying 2 to 4 strategic objectives – what must you increase or decrease relative to the customers you serve. Your strategic objectives should be only 2- or 3-word statements, beginning with a verb – either increase or decrease, followed by a noun.  

Now go to the strategic goal below, operations, and once again, identify 2 to 4 strategic objectives relative to your operations and ask yourself this question – what must you increase or decrease relative to your operations to meet or exceed your customers strategic objectives above? Again, your operational strategic objectives should be only 2- or 3-word statements, beginning with a verb, either increase or decrease, followed by a noun. 

Next, go to the workforce strategic goal and identify 2 to 4 strategic objectives relative to your workforce and ask yourself: What must you increase or decrease relative to your workforce, to meet or exceed both your operational and customers strategic objectives above? Use only 2- or 3-word statements, beginning with a verb – either increase or decrease, followed by a noun. 

And finally, go to the finances strategic goal at the bottom of your strategy scorecard and identify 2 to 4 strategic objectives – and document what must you increase or decrease relative to your finances, to successfully achieve your workforce, operations, and customer strategic objectives above? Limit yourself to only 2- or 3-word statements, beginning with a verb – either increase or decrease, followed by a noun. 

Click here if you would like to learn how to identify a balanced set of strategic goals and strategic objectives and how to stack or order them to create a “flywheel” effect, enabling you to improve performance fast and fast by reading/watch my articles titled: Strategic Goals & Objectives & Why They Are Critical To Your Success.

Key Performance Measures & Target Levels

Next is to identify 2 to 4 key performance measures for each strategic objective. The measures you select should be a balance of both leading and lagging measures. Lagging measures are the outcomes you desire for each strategic objective, and the leading measures should be predictive measures, what must be done well, to achieve the lagging, outcome performance measures.  

With your performance measure identified for each strategic objective, next is to determine the required target levels for each measure. Be realistic – what does your boss expect you to achieve, and what can you achieve, with current resources, hard work, and process improvement.  

Identify Key Strategic Challenges 

With identification of your strategy scorecard strategic goals, strategic objectives, measures, and target levels, next is to identify 2 or 3 KEY challenges you believe will make it difficult to achieve the performance measure target levels aligned to each of your strategic goals and objectives. You will want to start at the top strategic goal – customer – and work down just like you did previously. 

Identify Key Strategic Actions 

And the last section to complete your strategy scorecard is to identify 2 to 4 key strategic actions you believe are required to overcome each challenge, to achieve the performance measure target levels, and to demonstrate achievement of each strategic objective.  

Step 2 – Strategy Execution 

With the completion of your one-page strategy scorecard, next is step 2 – Strategy Execution where you will deploy your strategy scorecard by creating department levels scorecards and align your key workforce systems to the achievement of the strategic goals and objectives you are accountable for.  

If you are responsible for several large departments or services lines, then I would suggest you require each leader who oversees them to create their own, department levels strategy scorecards, by follow the exact same process described in step 1 – strategy development  

But, if you lead a small team, I would keep it simple and only create one strategy scorecard document – but add additional leading and lagging performance measures by strategic objective – for each of the team members who report directly to you.  

Align Key Workforce Systems 

The next action to be completed in step 2, strategy execution is to align your key workforce systems to the achievement of the strategic goals and objectives you are accountable for. Examples of key workforce systems you should evaluate and align – include your: Hiring processes, Training topics, Recognition systems, Employee and leaders’ evaluations, and compensation and promotional systems.  

To align these key workforce systems, you will use your organizational and department level scorecards as a guide and with your leadership team, ask the following questions:  

  • What are the required hiring systems required to seek and select individuals who can achieve the key outcomes on your strategy scorecards? 
  • What training is required to achieve these outcomes? 
  • How should you recognize team members who achieve these outcomes? 
  • What systems are required to promote individuals who have achieved similar outcomes in their current position and can achieve comparable results in their new position? 

Step 3 – Strategy Improvement 

And finally, Step 3 Strategy Improvement is where you will conduct monthly strategy scorecard review meetings with your team. These meetings should last no longer than 90 minutes (about 1 and a half hours) and there are three primary objectives.  

First is to review your performance outcomes for each of your strategic goals and objectives and determine if you are meeting the required monthly and YTD performance measure target levels – you and your team are accountable for.  

Second is to celebrate your and your teams’ successes at meeting your key performance outcomes. Ask your team who do you need to contact in person, by phone or email, and let them know how much you appreciate their hard work and achievements critical to the success of your organization.  

Third, is to identify and prioritize performance measures that are not meeting required target levels and ask the leader responsible for the measure to report why and what they are doing to quickly close performance gaps back above required target levels.  

Strategic Planning Certification Courses

Invest In Your Leadership Team & Quickly Achieve The Outcomes You’re Accountable For

Invest in your success by enrolling your team in one our three, strategic planning, online certification courses for only $99 per leader, per class.

Using our award-winning, 3-step system, hundreds of leaders from all types of industries where able to quickly achieve the results they’re accountable for and win local, state, national, and international awards for performance excellence and strategy execution.

To learn more about our green, yellow, and black belt strategic planning certification courses, watch the videos below and then then click the request information button to send me your questions how to get started.

David Harrawood, President
Baldrige Group Consulting

Baldrige Group Strategic Planning System
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