Is Your Strategic Plan Out of Alignment?

 

I believe most people tend to be easily distracted.

One of the hardest things to do is get everyone and everything aligned on the few things that matter to the profits at your bank…yet this “intentional congruence” is one of the most important practices you must follow if you want to grow and prosper.

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

If you’re the kind of person…

  • Who is happy with your strategic planning process, you’ll love this because you’ll find out how aligning it even better can catapult you to new heights of success.
  • Or, if you are the kind of leader who is frustrated that you’re just not getting the breakthrough results you hope for through your planning…you’re going to enjoy the “surprise” we’ll show you regarding how to use your strategic planning process going forward to get even better results.
  • Or perhaps you feel like your planning is good but maybe not optimized…you’ll be thrilled with our advice for fine-tuning your approach to bring in more profits with more ease.

There are really three challenges to aligning a strategic plan:

  • The traditional planning process done by most banks just doesn’t allow for good alignment, making it almost impossible to be a top-performing bank.
  • Also, almost nobody really seems to know what exactly to align.
  • Additionally, your executive team, with all the best of intentions, seem 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.

I’m now going to give you three steps that will make your next strategic planning session FAR more effective in driving your profit and growth needles with almost immediate results.

Step 1: UNLIKE so many traditional planning processes, the best approach to strategic planning for elite banks that are outperforming peers 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. More importantly, it allows for complete alignment so that everything is coordinated with the target markets and the BHAG.

Step 2: Prepare for some powerful conversations because prioritizing the parts of your plan on to one sheet forces 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 on the final plan, which is always infinitely different from the first plan. It’s hard work—but quite frankly, some of the most important work an executive team ever does.

Step 3: Create a supportive quarterly strategic planning process. When all the “gotta 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.

That’s just three steps:

1) Implement a fast-track, one-page strategic planning process.
2) Allow at least two days to wrestle every decision to the ground and make sure everything ties together.
3) Keep it all going with a quarterly planning process.

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 knowing you can live your commitments—what a contrast to what was happening with the old process.

Next steps—make sure you tune in to the next video where I’ll show you how to implement your new strategic plan.

Discover how to make sure your people don’t just pay you lip service and actually execute it, so you can sleep at night knowing that everyone and everything is tied to the plan every week.

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