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Monthly Archives: March 2017

Steps of Strategic Planning

While there are several different approaches to implementing Strategic Planning Steps , most models use the following definitions:

* Mission definition : The mission definition stage of Strategic Planning encourages an organization to develop a brief description of purpose to Inform potential stockholders, employees and customers what they can expect from the company. From the mission definition, a mission statement can be developed that serves as a company’s calling card and core focus description.

* Vision/Trend Analysis : The next facet of Strategic Planning Steps directs a company to analyze current market trends and make committed decisions about where the business is heading. Defining long term goals and visualizing the future of the organization can help to focus current activities and important financial decisions.

* Strategic Objectives : Once long term goals have been set, the strategic objectives phase consists of formulating actual business plans to achieve the visualized goals. One acronym used frequently in this stage of Strategic Planning Steps is SMART. SMART stands for the type of objectives to be developed to fully realize the company’s long term goals. These objectives include:

o S – Specific objectives

o M – Measurable objectives

o A – Achievable objectives

o R – Resource-based, realistic objectives

o T – Time-frame assessed objectives

* Critical Success Factors : Important milestones and achievements key to goal realization should be identified at the critical success factor stage of Strategic Planning. Singling out these factors provides an easy means for measuring the ongoing success of the business plan.

* Actions to be Implemented : After critical success factors have been identified, the next phase involves the development of action plans need to realize success. Specific tasks and organizations management strategies are designed to effectively implement the business plan. Task management is often defined by the core competencies required for each position in the company.

* Performance Analysis and Progress Measurement : The last of the most common steps is comprised of formulating methods by which to measure the organization’s progress. Comprehensive performance analysis tools and measurement criteria are developed to effectively monitor the success of the current system. These tools can be used to report both internally and externally on the progress and growth of the company.


Why Teams Don’t Work?

1. Backstabbing. If you are the team leader and backstabbing is an issue, suggest that the team come up with a rule. Example: if there is any backstabbing among team members and they can’t resolve it on their own, it goes before the team leader.

2. Interrupting. This is a common challenge in meetings. Have the team come up with a rule such as, “No one is allowed to speak until the other person finishes and you raise your hand.” Remember, it starts with the team leader.

3. “Tangents.” A team is going off on tangents in meetings. If you are the team leader, tactfully ask the rest of the group if they want to hear any more about the issue being discussed. If not, let that person know they can talk with you privately after the meeting. Remember tact and diplomacy.

4. Whining. Have an unwritten rule that team members must come up with a solution whenever they complain. One team actually held up cue cards with a sad face whenever someone whined excessively. It added humor to the meetings but got the point across.

5. Not sharing job knowledge, communication. This is so important it should be in every employee’s job description. Sharing of job knowledge, skills and ideas is central to a team’s success. No matter how many team building exercises you engage in, your team won’t be productive without this simple rule.

6. Tardiness. Is there an employee who is consistently late? What is the impact on the morale of the team? Have a personal standard in writing for what is considered “late.” This helps, too, with accountability.

7. Too many breaks (or too long). Put the number of breaks allowed, along with time frame, in job descriptions. An alternative is to have the team come up with how many breaks a team member can have in one day. Include the number of minutes. Be specific.

8. Disorganization of shared workspace. 2 common problems: 1) Shared workspace is so small it affects productivity. 2) If messy “Oscar” and clean “Felix” are sharing workspace, have them define the rules on what’s considered neat and organized. Have them ask themselves, “Is this problem affecting productivity?” I love it when I go into a company’s break room and above the sink it reads, “Please clean up after yourself. Your mother doesn’t work here!”

9. Excessive personal use of the internet or telephone. In my seminars around the world, I frequently hear complaints from people receiving too many joke emails. Another common challenge is someone in the office talking loudly while on a personal call. Have the team define the rules. While everyone likes to socialize, what is considered to be adversely affecting the performance of the team?

10. Leaking confidential information. What is considered confidential? Be specific and put it in writing. Hold everyone accountable.

Effective communication is the key to the success of any team. Gather your team together for a team building meeting. Have everyone list and discuss any potentially unacceptable team behaviors. Are there any issues or activities adversely affecting the team? What issues could impact the team in the future?

Write everything down. Print it out and give everyone a copy. There will be more “buy in” because they were involved in the solutions. Hold everyone accountable. Without accountability there’s no incentive to change behavior. And your team members want to see you as a team leader who takes action.

Lastly, how are you performing as a role model? In thinking about how to be an effective team leader, remember your people are going to watch what you say, and more importantly, what you do.


Teamwork for Business Success

There was a time when my business first began I thought I was supposed to do it alone. In fact, for the first year or two I was under the strange impression that if I asked for help I was weak and I was supposed to have all of the answers. WOW, what an eye opener the day I realized how much I was depriving myself and my business of substance, wisdom, fun and new evolving ideas. Then another big awareness hit. I began looking at my strengths — how I best interacted with people — what truly energized me. TEAMS!! Multiples of business people that needed and wanted the same end result — Building their Business. I began seeking teams that were forming; business classes with small groups; forming my own team, and now facilitating Success Teams. I will never be without a team. It would rob me of the stimulation I need and the giving I so enjoy.

The bottom line is we are all human beings; we need a pat on the back, a supportive environment, new ideas and sometimes a kick in the pants. Teams may be set up for all types of needs — mine happens to be for my business. I would not be where I am today without my team. We are moving into our 3rd year together. We chose to meet once a week for 2 hours. Every week I count on that meeting because I know I am going to be able to give support, lend an ear and assist my teammates with whatever they need for that time period. I will also be receiving the same. Whether I need to obtain valuable information, set goals to move forward with my week or want a cheering squad for a success achieved.

What are your thoughts for a Success Team? Are you the type of person that needs accountability to keep you focused? Do you have the desire to be part of a bigger picture and stay individual? If so, build it into your request of what a Success Team means to you. Maybe you don’t work well with accountability and simply like to have the freedom through the week to create and bring it back to the table. One of my team members has a particular approach that works for him when he has a lot to get done. He commits to buying the team breakfast if he does not complete his assignment. I believe he has only had to do that once — he has achieved the commitments he puts on the table.

A Success Team can be like the ‘All for One and One for All approach’. You are there to help each other succeed. I have as much investment in my teammates’ success as I do my own and I will do whatever it takes to help them get there. I also know they have the same commitment to me. Many times we are on the phone together during the week and periodically helping each other out with big projects. The level of commitment is in your hands.

Here are some tips to assist you in creating the foundation of your team:

– Find team members who are at the same commitment level you are to succeed in your business.

– Find team members who have a different business than you. If your team members are in the same business that’s OK, but I suggest those members have different previous backgrounds — it brings more variety and knowledge to your group.

– Choose a consistent time period, i.e. weekly, bi-weekly, etc. This lets you know you have some help and camaraderie to count on.

– Choose an environment for your meetings that is energizing to you. It could be your favorite latte hangout, a park or an office.

– Schedule a preliminary meeting to set ground rules and establish a trial period. With a trial period it gives each of your members time to decide if this is right for them and if you’re right for each other. A suggested trial period can be 3-months.

If you find yourself floundering, unfocused, or simply wanting human interaction do yourself and your business a favor. Form a team NOW. What are you waiting for? Give yourself and your business the boost and richness it deserves. Don’t wait another second — do it NOW!