Bruce D. Wyman Company

Since 1988

Providing Strategic Business Planning Services to small businesses and associations, both for- and non-profit, to help them leverage their use of their scarce resources: time, funds, and effort.

"If you don't know where you are going, any road will take you there." *

Who should participate in Strategic Business Planning?

The owners/partners/officers of the business or association must be intimately involved in the Strategic Business Planning process so that the resultant plan captures and reflects their own thoughts, feelings, and convictions. Without their having fully participated in the formulation of the plan, they will not experience the inner drive that will be essential to their adhering to their plan and converting intentions into realities for the organization. A consultant CAN'T do their Strategic Business Planning FOR them; THEY HAVE TO DO IT THEMSELVES. The consultant can only assist by establishing and tailoring a process, facilitating the discussions, asking probing questions, and maintaining an impartial focus on the essential elements of the plan's development.

Unless the resultant plan has their own hard-achieved concensus and ideas in it, they won't demonstrate the "fire in the belly" necessary to adhere to the plan and have it serve its intended purposes of direction finder/goad/light on the horizon toward which to steer.

If a few refuse to be players, I'd suggest that the remainder of the group decide whether they want to go ahead or not as an organization. It's their call; it's their process and responsibility to make the organization work. If they decide yes, it is up to the actual "players" to make a go of it and effectively discard the non-participation of the non-players, until such time as the non-players either abdicate (or are removed from) their responsibilities to the organization or decide to pitch in and participate.

I see no need for the details of a Strategic Business Plan to be hidden from those who are expected to carry it out. I would submit that letting such individuals know the details makes it a whole lot easier for them to conduct their activities in coherence with the intentions of the Strategic Business Plan. I really believe in the "band of brothers" approach to conducting the business according to a Strategic Business Plan. If you expect people (line managers and workers) to carry out the elements of the Strategic Business Plan, then it's easier to do if those people have participated in the formulation of the Plan (through providing inputs to strategies and/or action plans), can find some of their own ideas in the Plan, and thereby have some vested ownership of the Plan. This is the approach used in "open" corporations that reveal the operating books to their employees and empower them in addressing necessary changes and preserving advantages and opportunitites.

The degree to which business owners/partners/officers can increase their powers by releasing ownership and control of operating/strategic/planning details is an individual decision for each business -- but it has a powerful effect upon how the business can progress toward its goals within its corporate culture and its environmental culture. Some businesses also draw their suppliers into the execution of their Strategic Business Plans.

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