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Strategic Planning Guide – A 3 Step Process

Strategic Planning Guide – A 3 Step Process

Strategic planning doesn't have to be difficult, long or complex. And anyone can develop strategy and related plans, you don't have to be in senior management.

Strategy and related plans can be used for an initiative you want to implement next year or a meeting tomorrow with a customer, staff, colleague or even your boss. Here is a simple method you can use today.

It's more about using a process that helps you develop your approach to achieving your goals than anything else. And if your plan doesn't end up exactly how you developed it, that's OK too, the process itself prepares you for change better than anything else.

Strategic Planning is required to ensure your resources and assets continue providing the results and the support your organization needs.
Without a Strategic Plan, you and your team won’t be effective and you won’t be able to get results, get attention and get ahead.

Why you need a Strategy:

  • Redirect from tasks to opportunities and result
  • Switch from fighting fires to preventing fires
  • Reduce risk with planning and a longer view

What is a Strategic Plan?

It is a roadmap to achieving a goal. It may cover your entire department or responsibility or it may focus on a specific issue or element of your role. It can be long and involved or a simply one-page document that provides guidance and steps you need to implement to achieve a goal.

Making it Happen:

There are a few things that are important to your success. While it may seem that developing the Strategic Plan is the hardest part, most plans fail because of the implementation. The key is to keep it small and be successful, then build on that success for the next initiative. Don’t bite off too much or
try to be too ambitious.

  • Take your time and keep it manageable
  • Link your plan to your company’s strategy
  • Justify your initiative and get buy-in and support
  • Don’t re-invent, rebuild
  • Go slow, manage change
  • Set aside time from your operational responsibilities to make it happen

The 3-Step Strategic Plan

Most Strategic Plans never get written or they fail because they are too involved and complex. Keep them simple and use these three basic steps as your core approach:

  1. Why do you need to do it? What is your goal?
  2. What are the things you need to get done to achieve your goal?
  3. How can you make those things happen?


By following the 3 steps above and writing them down, you will have the outline of your Strategic Plan. Then, you establish the tactical things that will help you implement your plan.

Download this Strategic Plan Guide with both the 3-Step Strategic Plan template and the 5-Step Implementation template.

One-Page Strategic Planning Guide
One-Page Strategic Planning Guide
The One-Page Strategic Planning Guide with some instructions and both the 3-step Strategic Plan and the 5-step Implementation Plan guide.

About Michel Theriault

Michel is the founder of Success Fuel for Managers. He is an author, speaker and consultant focusing on topics relevant to Managers and aspiring Managers in businesses of all sizes who want to get results, get attention, and get ahead. He is also a contributor to Forbes and AllBusiness Experts . Michel is available for speaking engagements, training and consulting. Connect with him or send an email.

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