Making Transformational Planning a Repeatable Process
Geoffrey K. Weiss
Director of Channel Solutions and Transformational Planning
Banking and Credit Services
You’ve just completed 3-6 months worth of rigorous transformational planning to lead your organization toward achieving its strategic objectives. Now you may be asking yourself, "How do I take this planning work and integrate it into the way we do business day to day?" Be assured this is the right question to ask, as 80 percent or more of the plans never come to fruition primarily because of lack of funding, a change in leadership, or the transformation planning is not integrated into the day-to-day business operations.
To prevent becoming part of the 80 percent with stalled-out plans, a few key actions should be considered both during and after the planning cycle:
- Owning the plan
- Building flexibility into the plan
- Examining internal and external changes
- Prioritizing and re-prioritizing initiatives at regular intervals.
I often get asked, "What does it mean to own the plan?" This is a tough question to answer straight off as much of the answer lies in how the plan was built. When the organization goes through a transformational planning exercise, bringing in key leaders and team members to execute the work is essential. Other ways to increase the success rate are to keep objectives near term, in manageable chunks and close to the team.
Another reason plans fail early is lack of flexibility. Flexibility is what buys your plan the ability to deal with day-to-day changes in the business environment while still achieving overall objectives. This manifests as options for implementation, or avoiding hard-line dependencies where possible, and aligning third parties to complete initiatives or components of initiatives.
The core business of banking has not changed significantly. What we do see are changes in how accounts work, the regulatory environment, the channels with which customers interact, and how money is moved. As you progress through the execution phase of your transformation plan, it is important to monitor and account for these changes in the market as the plan is being carried out. As the business model evolves during progress toward the transformational goal, priorities may change.
Reviewing your plan at regular intervals will help ensure updates occur in response to changes that might reframe delivery of your initiative.
Transformational planning can become a way of doing business; it requires discipline and focus, but it can be achieved. Check out The Leader’s Guide to Banking Transformation for more in-depth insights into these issues. Registration is required for access.
What do you think? Do you have a transformational plan in place or an old one that stalled out? What are some of the challenges you face in implementing your plan? Post and share your thoughts and feedback below.