Every company needs an organizational strategy to help them evolve and get them where they want to go. Organizational strategy is defined as
“A dynamic long-term plan that maps the route towards the realization of a company’s goals and vision.”
Before developing its strategy, the company needs to figure out what they want to become and what they need to do to get there. It helps to already have some established long-term goals and a vision in place.
Developing your strategic plan may see a bit overwhelming, but by breaking everything down into smaller steps, you are able to get things done and develop a good strategy. Here are a few tips to help you out.
1. Identify the Problems
The first step is to figure out where you are and where you want to be. In order to do this, you need to identify any problems that are keeping you away from the vision and mission of the company.
Be clear about what the problem is and remember that different people might have different views of what the issue actually is. It would be best to talk about the problems with your team to figure out what the real issues are.
It can be easy to ignore other people's opinions but don’t! This is a time for active listening and communication. So put down your differences for a while and listen to each other with the intention to understand. The best solution is one that satisfies everyone’s interests, and the only way to figure out where the problems are is by listening to what everyone has to say.
Listening, however, is not the only way to identify the problems. The information could be gathered through observations, interviews, evaluations, discussions or even employee surveys. Gathering information through these observations helps managers to identify the problem and help determine what steps need to be taken next.
Once you identify the problem, it should then be discussed and reviewed so you can take the necessary steps to plan action.
2. Plan Action
This is the perfect time to do some brainstorming. List the possible solutions and then evaluate all the options. It will be helpful to write down all the positives and negatives to each solution. By writing everything down, you will have a better picture of all the details and implications.
Once you have everything written down, select the best option. Maybe there is a way to bundle a number of options together for a more satisfactory solution. Next, it’s important to determine who is accountable for each step taken. The budgets, action plans, and different strategies are all steps that need to be taken. These steps also need to include all the resources that will be used whether it’s money, time or number of employees involved.
Because there are so many different steps, you need to clearly communicate who is in charge of each step. This also means that employees need to have regular reviews and be able to get the help they need if they have any questions and concerns.
3. Negotiate Change
Employees or other members of the company may resist change so it’s up to you negotiate this change so that everyone can get on board and start being productive in their work. The first thing you need to remember is that change is an evolutionary process. Recognize that mistakes happen and that’s ok! It’s all part of the process of change.
You need to make sure you do your homework before introducing a new idea. This will help you gain more support from your team because you know what you are doing. Adrienne Cooper, Chief People Officer at FitSmallBusiness.com states that:
“It's challenging because as soon as you introduce changes, you know you have to start planning for the next ones. People can suffer tremendously from change fatigue, so building this thought process and expectation of change into your organization can help increase people's tolerance for it. It also has to be linked to the organizational purpose and values, or it just feels like change for change sake. Spending as much time on the 'why' of the change as the actual tactical implementation of the change is critical for success.”
Help the employees know what’s in it for them to make the change. Resistance disappears when employees know about the benefits the change will bring them. Also, employees must feel that their time, energy and commitment are going towards something with purpose. It is your job to let them know what that purpose is.
4. Evaluate Progress
There are two types of evaluation that should be focused on. One type is the summative evaluation which shows the fate of the organizational development process and the other is formative evaluation which will use feedback to improve the program. These evaluations will help you know the company’s contribution to profit and the quality of the organizational process.
These evaluations, however, are not just a one-time thing. In order to ensure your strategy performs the way you designed it, you need to constantly be evaluating it. To do so, you should be holding regular review so you can see what’s working and what needs to be tweaked. You can get with your team every quarter to take a look at your goals. Discuss your goals and see if you're obtaining them or if you need to make changes to your plan.
5. Make Your Organizational Strategy Accessible
Your employees are the backbone of your company so its important that your employees know what is happening. It’s impossible for your employees to stay on task and fix the problem if they are out of the loop. Often times a company’s organizational strategy plan ends up on a PDF somewhere and never looked at again. Instead, make sure you incorporate your plan in every aspect of your company.
Figure out what works best for your company, whether it’s making a print out of the plan and having it at every work station or perhaps revisiting the plan every time you have a meeting. Whatever you decide to do have the employees know it and live it. Only then will the plan turn into results.
6. Consider Company Culture
Organizational development has a goal to improve organizational effectiveness while adhering to the company's culture and values. Your company culture needs to be a priority. Your company culture needs to be a priority. Your company is only as strong as it’s people so think about the culture as you make organizational strategies.
One thing to do while organizational development takes place is to communicate with your employees the company vision. You may even need to talk about all the positive things that will take place when changes arise. If the culture does start to change because of organizational development then make this an exciting time to get together with your team and come up with new traditions and routines that will get the employees excited. As changes start being implemented the culture may change but an organization with strong company culture can effectively change it’s culture because employees can be responsive to their organizational structure. By keeping company culture in mind and constantly communicating with your team, you will find that although changes may arise your team will be strong and find success within the changes.
Organizational strategy begins with the big picture you want to achieve and then the steps you need to take. Once you have determined your strategy and what you must do to make your goals a reality, you need to follow up.
Focusing on a strong business plan can help any business to the next level. If you haven't already started, its time to figure out your own organizational strategy. This will help your team stay focused and keep your company on track