The planning process is essential to establish broad goals, but it doesn’t start or stop there. As owners, if you have an interest in growing the business, success will come a lot easier if your employees are growth minded. The way to accomplish this is to attract and hire people who have demonstrated a drive to learn, adapt and lead. Then create a learning environment. Take a look at this true story of one company that succeeded at executing their Strategic Plan:
A 250 person engineering firm consistently conducted Strategic Planning. It began when the company was twelve employees with internally-led brainstorming sessions. It evolved into professionally facilitated planning as the employee count sailed past 50. One key to success was to create a strategic goal to seek growth minded employees. Since the early days, this criterion was a priority for new hires. Decades later, at 1,000 employees, that priority continues.
After a business consulting session, the CEO realized that sustained growth meant breaking through multiple barriers at fairly predictable points. They must keep their service offerings fresh and do so from an expanding geography, and the management team needed to continuously increase their business acumen to stay ahead of the competition.
The CEO regularly brought in business consultants to educate senior managers on the complexities of growing a business and to identify changes that would occur at each barrier. And, like a beating drum, they continuously reminded the team to anticipate and overcome barriers. If they failed to accomplish this, the company would join the ranks of most firms who seek to grow but can’t because they don’t understand the change required to get there.
Most firms hit a ceiling and then fall back, doing damage to morale and careers. With this approach, the management team that existed in the early days is still in senior management roles, even though the job requirements have become much more complex.
Executing your strategic plan requires strong leadership and the growth-minded involvement of all employees in the firm. This execution springs from a good plan, and then launches when leadership is disciplined in hiring growth minded employees and injects advanced business skills into those at the firm who can influence growth. Imagine the rewards you will secure for yourself with early actions on hiring and business education. Take action now and explore a hiring and learning plan that will take you and your firm to another level.