Does your business have a united vision like the All Blacks!

When people are united behind a clear vision and strategy, amazing things can happen. The All Blacks back to back Rugby World Cup win is one example. The global success of Xero, driven by its vision of ‘beautiful accounting software’, is another. But often, there’s a gap between the vision and strategy set by the owners, directors or trustees, and what the organisation actually does.

When the vision isn’t reflected in what happens ‘on the ground’, it’s enormously frustrating for business owners, directors and trustees. They don’t understand why people in the organisation just don’t seem to ‘get’ the vision they laboured so long and hard to create. It’s frustrating for people in the organisation too. They’re working hard, doing what they think is right for the organisation – but somehow it doesn’t seem to meet the expectations of the owners or the board. So what’s behind that gap between the vision and strategy – and the way they are interpreted and executed?

Communication breakdown

In our experience, one of the fundamental issues is around the clarity of the vision, and the way it’s expressed. To achieve the owners and board’s vision, the team firstly need to understand what it means for the organisation, and how success will be measured. More importantly, they need to know exactly what it means for them – and how they will be measured.

It sounds simple, but it’s not – and that’s the cause of much of the frustration.

Often, Owners, Directors, Governors and Trustees have broad conceptual goals, based on a desire to leave the organisation in a better position after they are succeeded. For example, they may want to be ‘the leader in their market’ or ‘the pre-eminent provider of widgets to New Zealanders.’ While those are admirable goals, they’re also relatively ‘loose’ and open to interpretation or misinterpretation as the case may be. The more stakeholders you have, the more interpretations there are likely to be.

We often see business plans being driven by budgets rather than strategy. And when that happens, unintended consequences can result.

Business Planning should always start with a clear understanding of the purpose of the organisation, how that purpose will be achieved, and how it will be measured. A budget and detailed action plan is then developed based on the resources needed to carry out the agreed strategy – not the other way around.

Business planning is not a simple process. In our experience having a structured planning framework is the key to business success.

Having a clear vision and strategy along with a smart well prepared business plan in place for 2016 will ensure that you keep focused and stay on track when it comes to business growth and success.

Phone BDO Rotorua on (07) 347 9087 to enquire how we can help back your business success in 2016 and receive a complimentary one hour meeting to discuss your business needs.

BDO Rotorua offer a range of Business Development services that may qualify for a registration fee subsidy through the Regional Partnership Programme.

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