Aligning an organization's two way communication is key to successful implementation of its strategy:
Jipe Kelly, Co-founder & Consultant at AfriDev Exchange

The two key questions to ask when worrying about the successfully implementation of your strategic plan are:
1.Is everyone involved in the execution of any part of the strategy familiar with the entire strategy?
2.Do all the staff, volunteers and Board know what they need to do in their position to move the
  organisation’s strategy forward?

The way an organisation’s strategy is communicated to staff, volunteers and Board can have a significant impact on it’s implementation success. Sometimes Managers focus on presenting the strategy in the so call “quarterly reinforcement” meetings which do not actively engage associates at all levels in thinking strategically, and this may lead to execution failures particularly if a two way communication process is not established through which every staff or volunteer can relate their day-to-day reality with every bits and pieces of the strategy

Moral communication has to be a two way street.
Everyone involved in the implementation of the organisation’s strategy should be given the opportunity to think about the strategy from their perspective — what does it meant to their job? What does it mean to their department on a day-to-day basis? By asking each individual staff, volunteer and/or department to present what they have to contribute to move the organisation’s strategy forward, the individual will have the opportunity to think about the organisation’s strategy in the context of what they do on a regular basis. By allowing individuals to think on a more strategic level, each individual will focus on the key activities of the organisation — individuals will streamline their activities as a result of this process.

Asking each department to make a presentation on how the department can move the organisation’s strategy forward will enable each group to think through clear objectives that will be presented so that others in the organisation would understand. This will allow other department's to better understand each other's role in the organisation’s success and will also allow for more coordination moving the strategy forward.
How do you develop a process for strategic alignment in your organisation? Here are some thoughts as to how you can engage each individual and/or department:

I.Strategy Review
a. Start by reviewing the organisation’s strategy, goals and objectives. Make sure that everyone involved
  (staff, volunteers, Board) understand the big picture.


II.Situation Analysis
a. Hold a team meeting for each department. Start by reviewing the organisation’s strategy, goals and
  objectives.
b.What are the departments' strengths and weaknesses?
c.What new opportunities could the department pursue?
d.What needs to be improve and how
e.What level of support can the department provide to other departments
f. What level of support does the department require from other departments

III.Departmental Objective Development
a.What are the 3-5 most important projects for the department to complete in the next 9-12 months?
b.How do these objectives support the overall organisation’s strategy? (If they do not should they be
  departmental objectives?)

IV.Implementation and Planning
a.Develop action plans for each objective.
b.Are you dependent on any other department to achieve any of the objectives?
c.Get approval to move forward with the objectives.

This process gains each department key objectives to accomplish during the next 9-12 months. It also enables the senior management team to make course corrections if they find that a department is not aligned with the organisation’s strategy. It also allows the senior management team to adjust the organisation’s strategy if a department uncovers issues that need to be addressed at the organisation level.
In addition, it will help each department and the senior management team resolves interdepartmental issues before they become problems.

Developing a strategy will help your organisation optimize its future. Ensuring that the whole organisation is aligned with the organisation’s strategy will help you achieve your goals and objectives in a shorter time frame.

successful strategic execution is paramount to creating greater impact on your social goals and sustaining your organization. If you accomplish these four steps you should achieve over 90% of your objectives within the timeframe selected. If you need help on putting in place structures or facilitating these processes, do not hesitate to contact us on: info@afridevexchange.org




AfriDev  Exchange's Articles on Strategic Planning:
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