The three most important questions that your strategy should answer are:
*What products/services/programs of value are we going to provide and to whom?
*Who do we need to staff the provision of these products/services/programs?
*How will we finance all of this activity?
An organization should have at least one strategic goal which relates to each of these questions.
The organization should have an integrated and coherent strategy that connects the answers to these questions and the goals together.
IMPORTANT: during the sequencing of your strategy implementation, you must consider how the actions you take in one area (products/services/programs, staffing, financing) affect the others. Your actions in one area need to complement the other areas of the organization’s operation.
As an example, many strategies are launched because an entity sees an opportunity to serve customers/clients with new services/programs/products.
Often overlooked, however, is whether the entity has the right number of people with the right skills to implement such a new endeavor. If not, then reorganizing staffing needs to be addressed first. “Doing more/different with the same” is usually not a good strategy.
Next, are you properly set to fund the new effort – including the staffing mix? What will you do to capitalize the new strategy – take money from reserves, debt financing, venture capital, venture philanthropy?
What’s the longer term financial model? Are there customers/donors who will pay for this over time? Have you done research on this or just trusting your “gut?” (Not a good idea.)
Maybe taking actions to secure your financing plan needs to be your first set of activities, followed by staff reorganization, and then new product/service/program launch. But each strategy is different and you need to study the connections between products/services/programs, staffing, and financing before making that determination.
Strategic leaders know that strategy needs to be orchestrated and integrated in order to lead to high performance. It is one of the most important responsibilities of senior leaders.