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Awareness leads to planning. Organizations managed by a specific plan and strategy significantly out-perform less well managed organizations of equal capabilities. In one study companies with strategic plans were 40% larger than those without a plan, had slightly fewer workers and thus, a 45% higher revenue per employee.

Strategic planning is the single most important activity a CEO and his management team can undertake. A strategic plan is the basic foundation of the company, providing a concrete frame of reference for making decisions about how to compete in the market place.

The purpose of a strategic plan is to produce consistent results over time. Organizations with strategic plans become proactive rather than reactive. They innovate and lead in their market place, out perform competition and grow revenues and profit year to year.

Planning becomes a significant competitive advantage.  There is a simple but comprehensive message: Planning and strategy are fundamental to the competitive position of the organization.

Planning develops organizational focus. Focus is intentionally directed and magnified attention. Focus drives performance. Performance drives results. Continuous focus becomes a competitive advantage.

Successful CEOs understand that effective strategic planning draws on their employees' wealth of knowledge gained from differing professional interests, experiences and perspectives. Organizational best thinking works at a far higher level than individual best thinking because group interaction enhances creative thinking and form a creative base of high level experiential knowledge.

Effective strategic planning incorporates a planning model that integrates both short and long term needs, creating an effective planning process that produces consistent sustainable results over time.

Integrated Planning Process

Strategic Planning

Operational Planning

Results Management

Vision, Mission & Values

Operational Analysis

Control Systems

Strategic Analysis

Key Results Areas

Management Reports

Strategy Statement

Indicators of Performance

Organizational Results

Strategic Objectives

Operational Objective

Individual Results

Financial Projections

Action Plans

Corrective Action

People Development


Reward Systems

Integrated Planning Process © 2003 The Executive Guide to Strategic Planning, by Patrick J. Below, George L. Morrisey, Betty L. Acomb (Jossey Bass), 1987


The integrated process starts with strategic planning, which usually focuses three to five years into the future. A detailed analysis of the past provides a starting point for decisions about the future. Analysis develops future direction by clearly determining best thinking on  

  • Product and Service uniqueness
  • Unique value proposition
  • Core competencies and key functions
  • Critical success factors

Operational planning identifies the results that implementation of the strategic plan will produce during the first year.

Plans often fall behind in execution. Continuous effort is crucial to results management. Every day short term priorities take management time and delay results. Management must use focused discipline to regularly monitor and control progress.

To find out how our planning and strategy programs can help you, click here.

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