Over the past 5+ years both these businesses have been working with John Hutchinson (Hutch) from PlanA Consulting as their business consultant / advisor. He’s assisted them from a broader strategic perspective as well as facilitating team meetings and workshops.
Although these two businesses are from different industries and are different sizes (Business 1 has 20+ staff and Business 2 less than 10 staff), they’ve both followed a similar path with regards to working through their annual strategic reviews, formulating business plans and carrying out execution / implementation.
A strategic review asks questions such as: are we doing the right thing, as opposed to: are we doing it right, which is more what the business plan covers.
As part of their annual work plans with Hutch, Business 1 and 2 complete a strategic review in the first quarter of any given calendar year, which involves reviewing their existing strategic plan, adjusting if necessary (usually only minor changes), before setting their business goals for the coming financial year.
At this point it is worth noting that carrying out a strategic review isn’t about a plan of action or vision per se. It’s more about developing an understanding of what the business needs to do in order to reach its goals, which will be reached by developing and implementing business plans year on year.
As a result of their strategic reviews, Business 1 and 2 were able to challenge their thinking, look at where their time and effort was best spent and change their focus. The strategic review is a rhythm that continues each year and then is supported through the year with development & execution of the business plan. This has helped Business 1 and 2 develop a/an: