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Intentional Congruence — The Key to Predictable Profitability

by | Strategic Planning

One of the hardest things to do is align everyone and everything with just a few things that matter to the profits of your bank.


Yet this intentional congruence is one of the most important practices that you must follow if you want to grow and prosper.

In this blog, I want to share with you a concept that has transformed the strategic planning results for hundreds of banks, increasing profits by 20 to 50 to even 100% in one year.


Now, if you’re the kind of person leader who: 


  • Is happy with your strategic planning process, but wants to find out how aligning it even better can catapult you to a new height of success…
  • Is frustrated that you’re just not getting the breakthrough results that you hoped for through your planning process…
  • Feels like your planning is good but maybe not optimized, and you want to fine-tune your approach to bring more profits with more ease...


…You’re going to love this!


There Are 3 Challenges to Aligning Your Strategic Plan:


Challenge #1

The traditional planning process done by most banks doesn’t allow for proper alignment, making it almost impossible to be a top-performing bank.

Challenge #2

Almost nobody really seems to know what exactly to align.

Challenge #3

Your executive team, with all the best of intentions, seems to be at odds about priorities. So they’re each doing their thing without knowing exactly what they are all collectively and individually responsible for creating regardless of department responsibilities. It seems like these same problems have been looming in almost every bank for decades.

So let’s rewrite history.


Here are three steps that will make your next strategic planning session far more effective in driving your profit and growth deals with almost immediate results:


Step 1: Implement a Fast-Track, One-Page Strategic Planning Process


Unlike so many traditional planning processes, the best approach to strategic planning for elite banks that are all performing fears in growth and profitability is a one-page plan designed exclusively for community banking. It includes all the key ideas from the BHAG to the vision values and key initiatives, to name a few.


Step 2: Allow at Least Two Days to Wrestle Every Decision to the Ground and Make Sure Everything Ties Together


Prepare for some powerful conversations because prioritizing the parts of your plan onto one sheet focuses on critical thinking skills. I always have a bank give me a rough one-page plan before we start working together. It takes them two full days of challenging everything to settle for the final plan, which is always infinitely different from the first plan.

It’s hard work, but quite frankly, some of the most critical work an executive team ever does.


Step 3: Keep It All Going with a Quarterly Planning Process


Create a supportive quarterly strategic planning process where all the “got-a-minute” interruptions are replaced by a few days of deep thinking, challenging, and committing. It ramps up the implementation by at least 50% so that you can get to your desired results faster.


I’ve heard bank after bank say, “We hit every goal and every deadline,” which is the point of strategic planning, the peace of mind, of knowing that you can live your commitments — what a contrast to what was happening with the old process!



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