From the desk of Eric Molho:
Inflation. New work environments. The great resignation. And now, a new war. Everywhere we turn, uncertainty reigns. After two years of hoping to return to “normal,” we are all coming to terms with a new normal that doesn’t look very much like 2020.
It may seem a strange time to try to predict the future, but this moment provides organizations with a compelling opportunity to look forward with flexibility and open minds. Rather than retreating to some revision of what things were like not long ago, we have the opportunity to dream about big changes and big opportunities. As uncomfortable as our present moment may feel, it can inspire us to tackle the issues that we have ignored for too long and chart the course for a bolder future.
Strategic Considerations to Shaping Your Future
At Neuger, we help organizations tell their stories, including the story of their future. Our strategic planning practice helps organizations peer over the horizon and build the road for their desired destination. Working across multiple industries, we have seen firsthand how important it is for our clients to stay focused and nimble, mission-driven and innovative.
There are five strategic considerations that companies should be addressing today as change comes at us from every direction.
Provide a Focus on Vision
For the past two years, most companies have had to focus on one thing: surviving in a pandemic world. It is time to get back to your vision and to remind your team, your stakeholders and the world what that vision is. This is a good time to review guiding documents, such as mission and values. Often these aspirational guideposts become even more meaningful in times of challenge and tumult. It’s time for CEOs to be inspirational about the future.
Revisit the Organizational Brand
Corporate executives should ask themselves if their brand is still strong and compelling in our dynamic environment. Does it need to be tweaked? Should it be overhauled? Get to the answers quickly, make the necessary adjustments and start reinvigorating the organizational brand today.
Research the Marketplace
Every day we see evidence of changing supply chains, technology and customer demands. As a company lays its strategic foundation for the future, it’s critical to understand your target audiences and what is changing for them. What are their needs, wants and perceptions as it relates to specific products and services? What better way to learn how to reach a company’s key audiences than to ask!
No matter if an organization is in manufacturing, a service industry or the nonprofit world, now is the ideal time to review operations. For office workers, the past two years have quickly accelerated skills and efficiency at remote work, changing the very nature of collaboration and client relationships. For manufacturers, the supply chain has been turned upside down with swiftly changing priorities and partners. Creating systems that can react to these kinds of changes will prepare us for the next set of unforeseen circumstances. Managers need to proactively analyze where they are today and where they might need to be tomorrow.
Chart. Your. Course.
A strategic plan paints the picture internally and externally about where you are going. The path will likely look a little different than you thought – and the journey will undoubtedly involve unseen adventures. But the destination remains. Whether you are a nonprofit, a consumer packaged goods company or an industrial supplier, your strategic plan lays out the priorities and vision for your future. This is essential to recruiting and retaining employees, building supplier partnerships and achieving your mission.
Savvy CEOs are currently setting their companies up for success and proactively looking to the future. Executive leaders should plan now so their companies don’t get left behind. The phrase of the day should be, “Don’t delay.”