The organization I chose is the Social Security Administration. The below information is the requirements for the assignment
1. Summarize the strategies and performance measures you have selected for your organization. To what extent do you think it is practical for the organization to collect and monitor performance data for your selected performance measures? How will the data be collected and what difficulties might be encountered in doing so?
2. Chapter 8 in Business of Government discusses implementation challenges. To what extent do you think there are mismatches between your proposed strategies and organizational structure?
3. Chapter 9 in Business of Government approaches for implementing the strategic plan include using a strategic management council and strategy implementation teams. Which do you think is more important for your selected organization and why?
4. After reading the description of Phase 6 Implement the Strategic Plan and Phase 7 Evaluate the Strategic Plan, identify the changes that are inherent in the strategic plan for your organization including changes in focus and changes in ways of doing things. Who should be in charge of monitoring the strategic plan to ensure that it is not set aside?
Phase 6 SP Implementation & 7 Monitoring, Adjusting and Adapting
Overview, Objectives and Lecture
Overview/Key Concepts
This week we shift our focus from developing a strategic plan to implementing it, monitoring implementation progress, and making adjustments as the situation necessitates. I often refer to this transition as shifting from “knowing” what needs to be done to “doing” it, and I find that it is much easier to know that the organization needs to make changes and adjustments than it is to implement them and see them through to the end.
Learning Objectives
(1) Understand Phase 6 Implementing the Strategic Plan
(2) Understand Phase 7 Monitoring, Adjusting and Adapting
(3) Understand the forces that will come into play to slow or even halt progress in implementing strategies and achieving goals and objectives.
(4) Know approaches to ensure that the plan is implemented, that new issues are identified and that interim updates are made to strategic direction.
Weekly Lecture
After the strategic plan has been vetted, feedback and input obtained, multiple versions and drafts reviewed, at some point the plan will be written and completed. At this point the organization now knows what its strategic priorities are but it has to commence the challenging part of implementing it. Phase 6: Implement the Strategic Plan involves the process of moving forward with implementation.
As noted in your text, there are two major implementation barriers: (1) difficulty of translating big ideas into specific operational steps and (2) difficulty of maintaining the focus that was achieved during the planning process. Accepted approaches for dealing with these barriers include:
• Organizing strategy implementation teams to refine strategies into actions, milestones and resource requirements.
• Integrating implementation plans into the agencies annual performance plan or operational plan
• Implementing a process and procedures for regularly reviewing and monitoring plan implementation progress
The strategy implementation teams will be in a position to identify the changes (skills, systems, structure, culture) necessary to shift from current approaches to ones necessary to implement the strategic goals and objectives. As I have mentioned before, change resistance is certain to occur, especially from those who stand to lose the most responsibilities and resources. If new functions are called for in the strategic plan but budget increases are not likely to be approved by authorizing committees, the organization must “shuffle the deck” in terms of de-allocating resources from existing areas and re-allocating them to new ones. This involves a cascading series of challenges including have the right people with the right KSAs in place, providing them with the necessary technologies, and ensuring the leadership responsibilities are aligned correctly. Strategy implementation teams will produce detailed implementation plans with included actions, responsibilities, milestones and resource requirements.
Using the annual operating plan, which is typically aligned with the annual budget to accommodate the necessary changes, even if it takes multiple planning and budget cycles, is essential and sends a message that senior leadership is serious about using the strategic plan to drive agency operations and activities.
As noted in Business of Government Chapter 8, there are many barriers to implementation success including agency culture, pessimism and skepticism, false support, passive resistance, pre-retirement lethargy, political appointees, mismatches between strategy and structure, lack of funds, IT constraints, and influence of unions and organized labor. To demonstrate the challenges, after working for months with one agency the senior leaders, all of whom were eligible to retire within the next year, made it very clear that they did not want to “make waves” on the remainder of their watch – they were NOT willing to support the important changes called for in the strategic plan. See Box 8-2 for other examples of real-world implementation challenges.
The first year of implementation is very critical. This “jump start” year is a time of transition and change. The amount of energy necessary to make the changes during the first year is substantial. Senior management support for implementation must remain strong and clear. Use of performance measurement during the first year – collecting and communicating performance results – helps agency personnel appreciate that leadership is serious about implementing the plan.
Phase 7: Evaluate and Monitor the Strategic Plan involves having a group dedicated to periodically reviewing the strategic plan implementation plan and determining if sufficient progress is being made. One useful idea that I have long advocated is implementation of a “strategic issue” collector capability. This might be automated or manual, using something as simple as 3″ by 5″ cards that can be used by anyone – customers, employees, other stakeholders – to submit ideas about emerging strategic issues. The suggestions can be accumulated until the next strategic planning session, or if a number of significant issues arise, can trigger and meeting of the Strategic Planning Steering Group to discuss how best to deal with them. This “suggestion box” approach enables input from a wide range of interested parties and also enforces the idea of inclusion in the strategic planning process, which is usually critical to the “buy in” process.
As part of the evaluation and monitoring process, questions can and should be posed:
• Is the current strategic plan on target and what has or has not been accomplished and why?
• Are the assumptions included in the situational assessment still valid, since they were made in the past and the organization now has more realistic information?
• What new challenges since the plan was developed have been identified?
• How well are the performance measures working – are they the right performance measures and are we effectively collecting and reporting performance information?
I have uploaded the strategic plan of the Social Security Administration,Business Government and a power point Phase 6 Implement the Strategic Plan and Phase 7 Evaluate the Strategic Plan




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