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Are You Making This Critical Error When Developing Your Strategic Plan?

I suppose I should just admit it: I don’t use my smartphone navigation app the way it’s intended.

I sort of use it…

I listen to the spoken directions, but I don’t look at the map. I know that smartphones use maps that are as current as can be. But I find trying to visually trace a route distracting when I’m driving.

Because of that, my smartphone often leads me astray when it comes to finding a city address.

The other day, for example, as I neared my intended destination my phone advised me to bear left, and so I got into the left lane.

Turns out I bore a little too far left moving into a left turn lane. Blocked by cars to my right, I was forced to make a left turn, and I found myself headed out of town on a freeway.

Had I gone straight for another half block — and I would have seen this on a paper map before I ever left home! — I could have turned left into the parking lot of the building I was seeking.

Why, I wondered as I frantically searched for an off ramp and a way to turn back, do I have this trouble with spoken directions? (I should admit I’m not the best with cardinal directions or map reading, either!)

Is it because I’m a visual learner and “just listening” doesn’t cut it for me? Maybe I’m just not observant enough about what’s ahead on the road. Or maybe I’m just kind of slow. (Not!)

But no, the real reason, I think, is this: The smartphone app doesn’t give me a clear idea of how I’m going to get where I want to go ahead of time.

In this respect, I prefer a paper road map. It’s wise, I think, to plan ahead.

Which brings me to the way you roadmap your business.

As the end of the year approaches, your thoughts have probably turned to planning for the following year.

You’re most likely considering…

  • What is our present situation?
  • Where do we go from here?
  • And how do we get there?

In all probability the answers to the first two questions will come easily.

Answers to the third question? Not so.

But without a clear idea of how you’re going to get where you want to go, you’ll likely turn down the wrong ramp and head out of town.

You’ve heard it said, “a goal without a plan is just a wish.”

What writer, poet and aviator Antoine de Saint Exupéry means is that you need to know how you will get where you want to go. Inherent in that — and most important — is who will get you there.

Yet, too often businesses — not your’s, I hope! — omit HR from participating in key strategic planning and decisions.

That’s a critical error, because your HR people will immediately recognize potential conflicts between what you’ve included in your strategic plan and what is realistic in HR terms.

By including them and human resources strategic planning in the overall planning process, you’ll ensure your plans are workable from the get go.

With a desired end state in mind, strategic HR planning aims to capture the “people element” of what you are hoping to achieve.

It begins by comparing your organization’s current employees and talent to your future needs and answers these six questions:

  1. Do we have the right people to carry out our plan? If not, what personnel do we need?
  2. Do we need to hire?
  3. What qualifications do the people we hire need?
  4. What about the employees we already have in place? Are they capable of carrying out our plan?
  5. Will we need to add training and development to our strategic growth process?
  6. What performance management and recognitions will help ensure the right attitudes and behaviors in my employees?

Here’s bottom line. Only with the right people with the right capabilities, behaviors and tools can you successfully implement the strategic plan you diligently create.

So now, while identifying your priorities for the coming year and years, why not look at the people side of your business and put a strategic plan in place for them a well? There’s nothing to lose and plenty to gain.


Your Solution Toolbox: Tools to Help You Find the Right People and Lead Them to Their Full Potential


You’ve worked hard on your HR strategic plan, and the time has come to find employees who will help you reach your goal.

But how? How DO you select the right person for the job? And after you hire him or her, how DO you successfully motivate them?

Here’s my recommendation: employee assessments.

Employee assessments will help you find the right people, shape them into a winning team and lead them to their full potential.

Take Profile XT® and Profiles Performance Indicator™.

Scientifically valid assessments, the ProfileXT® and Profiles Performance Indicator™ are inexpensive and highly effective tools…

…The ProfileXT® helps you quickly determine how well a candidate fits a job, a key indicator of how well he will perform and how long he will stay on the job.

It uses a job match pattern that you develop by examining employees who are most and least successful in a given position. Their scores provide benchmarks for new job candidates in the same position.

Often called a "total person assessment,” the ProfileXT® measures job-related qualities that make a person productive, qualities like thinking and reasoning style, behavioral traits, and occupational interests.

…The Profiles Performance Indicator™ will help you understand an employees’s behavioral characteristics so you will know how to motivate him successfully and make him more productive and valuable.

The Performance Indicator™ measures productivity, quality of work, initiative, teamwork, problem solving, response to stress and conflict, and employee performance development.

It generates reports that show how to understand, motivate and manage an employee. It also provides recommendations for improving employee performance. For example, it will help you understand how your employee responds to job-related stress, frustration and conflict. It also will show you how to stimulate an employee’s motivation, how to conduct an effective performance appraisal with her, and how to determine whether she is internally motivated or will need external stimulation.

If you would like more information about the Profile XT® and Profiles Performance Indicator™ or any of Profile International’s assessments, call me today at 952-322-3330 or send an email to mgorski@mgassessments.com.

HR Consulting

Call me, too, if you are looking for professional assistance with your personnel questions. We’ll help you learn how to:

  • Understand your workers’ strengths, weaknesses and interests
  • Match people to job demands
  • Increase employee performance throughout your organization


Let's Talk! We offer a no-obligation consultation to informally assess your current policies, procedures and practices. This may help determine what's missing in your current programs. Again, call 952-322-3330 or send an email to mgorski@mgassessments.com.