At its core, Strategy Deployment is an annual planning tool that sets a company’s goals & targets, then develops a month-to-month improvement plan to get there. This plan lays out on an A3, which you could think of as your company’s road map. This map shows us where we are today (What’s actually happening) and where we want to go (What’s should be happening). And, ultimately, shows the planned route to get there.
Simplified, this road map provides:
1. Direction. It defines your “True North,” or the basic business needs that must be met. Obviously this includes cash generation, but would also tap into the very reasons your company is in business in the first place. Achieving these Targets is the sole purpose of Strategy Deployment.
2. Determine the Gap. You must know exactly where you stand if you’re going plot a course to your destination. Reflect on past success as well as those actions that failed to live up to expectation. Ask the hard question, “How close are you to achieving your Targets?” For example, your warranty expenses rose with increased tile cracks and you fell short of your sales goals which adversely impacted cash generation.
3. Set Goals to Close the Gap. Your goals must be inline with your True North. Reducing Warranty will improve Stakeholder Loyalty. Achieving Sales Budgets will increase Cash Generation.
4. Write Specific Actions to Achieve the Goals. These Counter Measures are all the individual steps that you’re going to take to achieve the goals. For example, you’re going to 1) standardize tile installation and 2) implement a new tile underlayment to achieve your goal of reducing warranty, which will improve your Stakeholder Loyalty.
Obviously, we use the Strategy Deployment A3 as 10,000 foot view for annual goal setting and planning. This includes:
- Enterprise Annual Strategy
- Local Building Company Annual Strategy
- Enterprise Advancement Team Annual Strategy
However, Strategy Deployment can be broadened from an annual planning tool, to a road map for successfully implementing any improvement process. This includes:
- A Strategy to Meet a Community Sales Budget
- Building Partner Performance Improvement
- Software Roll-out & Implementation
- Marketing Promotion
For more information about the Strategy Deployment A3, I highly recommend Getting the Right Things Done: A Leader’s Guide to Planning and Execution by Pascal Dennis.