Strategic Thinking and Planning – 7 Steps to a New Future

Welcome Future Planner!

 Strategic thinking and planning is a path upwards, a set of steps designed to help you move forward with structure, process and creativity.  A well-planned process will help you and your team determine how best to build on strengths in order to take advantage of evolving market opportunities.

Reluctant? If the words ‘strategic planning’ bring up images of days locked in a conference room, flip charts filled with seemingly good ideas, and a lack of execution, it is time to think about planning in a new way.

Our strategic building blocks stack the deck in favor of action and results. We understand what it takes to implement.

The STEPS below will put you out front, ahead of the curve. We can help with one or more of the following:


Step One:

We meet with your CEO, Executive Director, board or strategic planning committee to understand your current situation, challenges, and organizational structure. During this session we will talk about who to involve, the timeframe, expectations, pre-work and follow-up that will ensure success. In this session we often talk about how to gain buy-in from those important to the process who may not see the value. Time is Money. Gaining buy-in up front will save later.

Step Two:

A pre-planning survey to short-cut the process of identifying key themes, issues, strengths, and an insider’s view of the external and internal landscape.  Building ownership is a key part of the process and the more you involve stakeholders in the process, the better. We can help to create a list of survey questions, facilitate the data gathering, and pull together key themes for use during the planning sessions.

Step Three:

Building a stronger teamStrategic planning is an opportunity to not only design a plan for the future, but to figure out how to best tap into the individual talents on the team.  We recommend investing the time to learn about the strengths, communication styles and motivators on the leadership team. We offer a short but impactful ‘Get to Know You’ session prior to facilitating a plan.  The result- optimizing your planning time together (and  in every other leadership interaction in the future).

Step Four:

Facilitating the plan  Whether internal or external, a strategic planning facilitator can make or break any strategic planning initiative. We are happy to connect you with leaders that can speak to their experience working with Helene Mazur 

Step Five:

Strategic Alignment is key to the success of any plan. We will help you make sure that your new strategies don’t clash with old financial, customer and employee systems and process, sales and marketing and other ingrained habits and expectations.

Step Six:

Change/Transition LeadershipSuccessful implementation takes more than a plan. There is a  transition process  that requires strong leadership. Developing leaders to tackle the challenges of change will help to build employee engagement while insuring your investment in strategic planning. Let’s talk about how we can help you build a resilient, empowered team. 

Step Seven:

Accountability- Implementation- Execution and Annual Goals-The outcome of a comprehensive strategic thinking and planning process will be a set of strategies and an action plan. We have found that unless the follow-up process is built into the plan, other things become a priority, and the ‘plan’ winds up buried in a file. We recommend quarterly follow-up meetings with a facilitator in addition to regular in-house meetings in between.  

Framework: A strategic planning process is optimally conducted every 3 -5 years. Every year an annual goals meeting revisits the plan, enabling leadership to check in on big picture progress and set new goals for the coming year. In our rapidly changing world, flexibility and adaptability are critical to sustainable success.