IMG’s Strategic Planning Program

Introduction:

All strategic planning efforts have to take into account what the future calls for, what managers and staff want as well as the customers and owners. The strategy of a firm, an institution or any other organization should integrate these different points of view.

When a client has decided to undergo the IMG Strategic Planning Program (SPP TM), the IMG consultant takes the managers and their firm through a particular process of analysis. Subsequently the results of this analysis are discussed, its mission statement formulated and then measurable objectives are fixed for the firm and its departments. Finally, operational plans are created as well as different responsibilities for managers and staff members.

The process of analysis

Future vision:
It is always difficult to predict accuratly what the future holds in store. Nevertheless, it is impossible to take any course unless trying to do so. It is necessary to try to predict what the economic environment in general will look like, how people will experience it and what their values and views will be. Also, to try to see what the supply and demand of pertinent raw materials, goods and services will look like. Different future models will have to be designed and an attempt made to see what effect each one of those will have on the present course and structure of the firm.

The views of the managers
The present situation of the firm has to be analyzed in order to see its capability of tackling the different tasks that it is involved in, how it handles the market and its competitors.

Managers have to define the role of the firm and its main goals, its "mission statement".

Thereafter the managers have to agree on the measures to be taken in order to reach these goals both in terms of organizational structure as well as the different strategies to be applied in order to reach them.

Customer views and those of the owners
The only way to know with any degree of certainty what these parties want the firm to do, is to ask them. The most effective method is to use The IMG "Strategy Planning Survey" which show how these parties view the firm and its "special" place on the market, as well as measuring the degree of "trust" that they have towards the firm.

In other words, to investigate what the image is of the firm in their minds, both the intellectual image as well as the emotional one. It is also necessary to explore what the views are of these parties with respect to specific strategic matters, so that the firm can have very clear guidelines as to actions to be taken regarding most matters.

Synthesis
By examining the views of those that are closely connected to the firm, it is possible to see which views converge and where there are discrepancies. After that, a clear course can be set, built on a common ground of the views of these parties and taking into account what the future seems to hold in store. At this stage, the views of the employees are also solicited regarding the different strategies of the firm.

It is necessary to examine carefully the different dangers that lurk ahead as well as the opportunities to take advantage of in the next few years. In this way, it is possible for the firm to know what kind of future it may expect as well as preparing it well for the different kinds of "futures" that it may encounter.

The process of implementation

When a clear overall strategy has been designed,
a discussion must take place within the firm and among those are closely connected to it, e.g. the owners. The results from the the process of "analysis" are used so that everyone has the same future vision, so that everyone moves in the same direction.

Study teams have to be formed,
in order to design clear action plans in relation to the main strategies that appear as a result of the process of analysis.

Each unit, each department sees its own role in light of this overall strategy of the firm.
Measurable goals have to be set for each unit/department. Operational plans have to be made in order to reach these goals. The role of each staff member has to be linked to the overall strategy and that of the department, to responsibilities and power. Only in this way is it possible to obtain satisfactory productivity and initiative on behalf of the workers.