Business Strategy and Planning
New generation strategy – gaining clarity on where you are going and how to get there.
Are you looking for a way to design and deliver a business strategy or plan that gives all your stakeholders exactly what they want? Our process, incorporating the Concord System,* does precisely that.
Concord is a business strategy and planning tool that calculates your fastest route to company goals, displaying it as a one page strategic plan that shows you what to do first. It focuses your team on delivering outcomes rather than just being busy, and has an implementation system that integrates with business as usual.
Concord is backed by a commercial plan that gets complete consensus from everyone and shows you how the money will actually happen. Built on science and utilising common sense it accelerates your company success like you have never seen before.
* Concord is owned by CTAG Ltd and is a derivative of the D4 method, which was originated and developed by Alan Fowler in 1987 and has several decades of research, development, and case studies that reinforce the Concord approach.
Where are you going?
It is so easy to get caught up in day to day matters and you never get a chance to ask, “Where are we going?” Are you constantly looking to grow and expand or is there something else on your horizon?
Your customers are constantly demanding cheaper products and it feels like you are in a battle with competitors to meet this demand. On top of this, you need to maintain or improve quality.
Occasionally you might look at needs you or your team have. This could be related to your long working hours and stress you wish would go away or improvements to working conditions for your team.
How do you get there?
There is just so much to do and so many ways to do it, where do you start? As your team get stuck into brainstorming ideas there is an explosion of detail that leaves you drowning in to-do lists.
You then look at your limited budget and wonder if even half of your strategy will be possible without breaking the bank. Depending on your ambitions you may be looking at increasing staff, including management, to help make the jump to the next level.
As you look around there are so many options available to you. Do you focus on new products and services, new territories and customer groups or look to do more of the same that has worked for you in the past?
What will it be worth?
What will generate you money in the future? Where should you focus your time and what things will generate you the most money? Do your stakeholders want you to focus on increasing asset value, increasing revenues or decreasing costs?
You might be thinking, what a waste of time coming up with numbers no one believes in? Assuming you manage to pull together sales projections, how do you calculate things that have no baseline data, are unquantifiable or intangible?
The numbers you come up with for your business strategy are vulnerable to unforeseen and unforeseeable events. What can you do to ensure your numbers are robust and take into consideration the unforeseen?
How do you make it happen?
You have your goals, finance and plan in place, now you just need to get your team to deliver them. For many, this is the toughest part because people hate change. You may find your people do not like orders, start finger-pointing or are just plain lazy.
Even those in your team who embrace change struggle, because they just don’t have the time on top of their current work pressures. You need an implementation plan that cuts away redundant tasks and integrates with business as usual.
This is not about winning hearts and minds; we have all heard a motivational talk that has everyone rolling their eyes. Instead, you need to know the practical steps your team needs to take that will get them on board.
How does Concord work?
Below is a more detailed explanation of each step of our business strategy process.
Step 1 – Goals
We take time to clarify who your business is serving – your stakeholders. We get under the surface and establish the true needs for each of your stakeholder groups. This ensures you are heading in the right direction.
These needs are then distilled into written statements we call Recognition Events, dated and set in stone. These are ‘show me’ pictures of your company’s future, and we calculate the cash benefit of delivering these.
The traditional approach to setting business goals setting is to focus on aspirations and number targets. Concord focuses on delivering stakeholder needs in the form of personal, tangible, evidence-based goals that are fully auditable and trackable.
You will be able to ‘walk the floor’ and see how your future company is delivering on your stakeholder needs.
Step 2 – Plan
Working from your Recognition Events (goals) we use the planning backward method to construct your one page strategic plan. Using ‘prospective hindsight’ this shows the story of how you got to your future.
Your one page strategic plan starts out as a large number of tasks and solutions on the journey to your future, but as we refine it reduces down to a few outcome-focused tipping points that will create unstoppable momentum when knocked over.
With agility built in, your one page strategic plan acts as your company Sat Nav, constantly re-routing to find better and faster ways to deliver your goals and avoid blocks.
Printed and displayed around your workplace, your one page strategic plan engages your team on a daily basis, keeping them focused on where your company is going and always looking for faster ways to get there.
Step 3 – Money
Concord looks at finance like you’ve never seen before. It focuses on the cash value of having got there – your goals, your future. We do this using Fermi Estimation and Monte Carlo Box methods, which allows us to calculate everything, including those things that are unquantifiable, unknown and intangible.
We go through this process with you and your finance manager/director. This provides you with rigorous and systematic, risk-adjusted estimates that are auditable and trackable to a granular level.
Once we have done this for the financial benefit of your future, we use these same tools to calculate the financial cost of delivering your plan.
This process leaves no stone unturned and tracks through over 70 value drivers to identify where your future cash benefit will come from. It gets consensus from everyone in your organisation, from your finance director through to your sales director.
You will be able to see the new revenues, increased assets, and reduced costs of your future. Concord shows this as a conservative, risk-adjusted statement, telling the story of how your money will have happened.
Step 4 – People
Your team are your most valuable asset, and Concord unifies all of them towards company goals, removing silo working in the process. Work will start with your senior management team (or equivalent) who will be responsible for delivering your company goals – their key performance indicators.
We will then meet with your team, inverting your hierarchy, enabling your people to transform your culture for the better. They will be more focused on delivering your strategy than ever before.
Strategic responsibility is passed to team members, through your one page strategic plan, asking them to ensure outcome focussed tipping points and cash value are achieved by agreed dates. The focus is for them to ensure it gets done.
To achieve this, individuals are enabled to use any resource they require. They can ask for time, money or anyone and everyone in the company, or outside, to support them.
What is Included in your Concord delivery?
We support you every step of the way and go at your speed. If you wish to go fast we can complete this in as ittle as 3 – 4 month. If you are busy or want to rollit out grapedually we can do it over 6 – 12 months.
Strategy and Plan Design
Initially we work directly with the MD/CEO. As you wish, we can quickly start to engage your senior maangement team so they have ownership for your strategy. You get regular meetings each month, with additional work performed in the background:
- Kick-off and expectation setting
- Clarification of your stakeholder groups and their needs
- Establishment and refinement of your company goals
- Creation and circulation of your one page strategic plan
- Creation and circulation of your rich picture showing your future
- Engagement of your senior management team (or equivalent)
- Facilitation of a team meeting to introduce your strategy and plan
- Identification of your value drivers and in-depth calculation of their cash benefit
- Calculation of the cost to deliver your plan
Strategy and Plan Delivery
As we implement new ways of working we support all your team to adapt find the success you are looking for. You will benefit from monthly reviews and support to drive the delivery of your plan:
- Half-day meeting each month (including individual support where required)
- Additional ad hoc phone and email support
- Integration with your business-as-usual processes (Meetings and reporting in particular)
- Enabling removal of blockers and funding gaps
- Acceleration of your plan
Included as Standard
- Remote and on-site delivery options (The whole process can be delivered via Zoom)
- Preparation ahead of meetings including scoping calls, research and document review
- Pre- and post-meeting calls and notes
- All communications related to the Concord process