Alpine Pass route mark: Strategic Planning is vital

Strategic Planning is Vital for Our People

Here is a short video about Strategic Planning process.

Short story why Strategic Planning is Vital for every business?

One of my passions is hiking in mountain regions and a favorite area is in Switzerland, particularly the Alpine Pass route – from Liechtenstein in the east to Montreux on the shores of Lake Geneva. The hike involves 325 kilometers of distance and 18,000 meters of height gain. It can be done in 15 stages. Perversely, I like to do this kind of hiking solo.

Strategic Planning is Vital for Our People
Strategic Planning is Vital for Our People – Photograph by Andrew Hewat

On this day, I was traveling from Lauterbrunnen over the Sefinenfurke Pass to a hamlet called Griesalp. It’s about 21 kilometers and takes about 7 hours of walking, with a lot of elevation.

When I finally got up to the Sefinenfurke pass it was just a narrow 10-foot ledge– more like a break in the mountain wall. As I sat there, looking back I could see forever. I could see clearly back to the Eiger & the Monch, two famous summits I had walked past the day before.

But facing the way forward was a bank of fog that was straight in my face. I could see backwards with 20-20 hindsight, but looking forward, there was only fog and uncertainty.

Strategic Planning is Vital for Our People - Photograph by Andrew Hewat
Strategic Planning is Vital for Our People – Photograph by Andrew Hewat

Nevertheless, I began scrambling down metal chains and metal ladders until it opened up a bit. Then I tried to follow red marked cairns, to help find the way. These are essentially splotches of red paint on the rocks. The trick is to keep going forward in the fog without losing sight of the last cairn before you find the next one.

You don’t make a lot of progress when you keep going back from where you started. I was hampered by the lack of other assistance – with two or more people there would still be uncertainty and a lack of comfort – but I could have done a lot better.

Many, many hours later – after sundown, after getting below the fog, I strolled into the village and life was good.

When I reflect on that experience, it has parallels in organizational life.

Strategic Planning is Vital for Our People - Photograph by Andrew Hewat
Marked cairns to help find the way – Photograph by Andrew Hewat

A lack of clarity about what we are trying to accomplish created uncertainty. Uncertainty generates a lack of confidence and a lack of confidence breeds subpar performance.

In organizations with a clear strategic direction, people should be able to see the future as clearly as the past. It should enable us to focus on what’s most important. It should remind us to stay on course, to achieve the vision that we set for ourselves.

Strategic direction is achieved through conducting effective strategic planning and then doing the smart work that ensures people know, understand and believe in it.

Most importantly they must act on it.

Strategic Planning Consultation