Strategic Planning Facilitation
As strategic planning facilitators Meeting Facilitators International has facilitated hundreds of strategic planning workshops and retreats. When strategic planning is done right, it is an indispensable management tool. Done poorly, it can be a waste of time or worse. So what does it take to do it right?
We believe that there is no one right way to do strategic planning. Each client who calls us has their own unique situation and unique needs. A small not-for-profit, an Entrepreneurial start-up, and a division of a Fortune 500 company all have different needs. We believe that it is up to the strategic planning facilitator to help the client articulate their needs and to then show them the tools and techniques that will get them the results that they want using a process that will fit their culture. That is why our initial consultation is always free. If we can’t produce a winning proposal after this consultation then we don’t deserve your business.
Having said this there are some common requests that we frequently receive, and over the years we have experimented to see what works best. Following is a brief description of our facilitation approach when we are going to be facilitating strategic planning and a client is interested in:
The Environmental Scan
Your strategy does not exist in a vacuum. Instead it exists in a changing world. If your team is on different pages as to the significance of the major trends in your market, then how can they be on the same page with respect to what your strategy should be?
Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats is a classic strategic planning tool. The problem is that too often it is done without any rigor. With the help of a consultant groups simply brainstorm lists of strengths and weaknesses. Over the years we have developed a different approach to each element of the SWOT analysis.
Non Profit Mission Statement
Non profit executives and directors are constantly reminded of the importance of having clear mission statements vision statements and values, yet there are so many bad one out there. What does it take to make a good one?
Setting Goals and Objectives
The right goals seem to pull us toward them. Our confidence is high that we can achieve them — with hard work — and we know that when we do it will feel good. The wrong goals, well…
Action Planning is where the rubber hits the road. With a well thought out action plan it is clear who is going to do what by when in order to get you where you want to go. Yet many retreats produce unclear action plans or worse no action plans at all.
Professional Strategic Planning Facilitator
The right facilitator can make all the difference in the world. A neutral facilitator doesn’t have a stake in the outcome and is in the best position to be neutral and unbiased. By taking over the meeting we allow the chair or CEO to participate like they never could before. And finally our experience and toolkit is going to save time and effort while producing better results.
From Our Clients
“Over the past five or six years we have worked with Bruce more than a dozen times as a focus group moderator for our pharmaceutical and medical device clients. The clients are always impressed with how quickly Bruce picks up challenging concepts and how easily he communicates them. The high-quality feedback and insight he draws from the focus group participants is what we are all looking for. Bruce’s track record in exceeding client objectives makes me extremely comfortable recommending him to any of our clients regardless of therapeutic area.”
“We wanted to find somebody unbiased, with no agenda, who could lead the retreat and pull in all points of view. Bruce did this and more. He brought some clever ways to make sure that we fully explored our ideas and he forced the discipline of setting priorities and of committing to an action plan. We have now used him three years in a row since everyone sees the value he adds and trusts his process.”
Mary Todd Peterson