How Your Online Presence Could Be Hurting Your Job Search

You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression. And, in this day and age, it is very often your online presence that will make that first impression for you. If you’re currently in the market for a new job, it is very likely that potential employers are checking you out online before even considering you for an interview. The strength, or weaknesses, of your online presence, can make or break you. Don’t let them keep you from getting the job that you want!

job search

Even though you are applying for a professional position, your personal social media will still be under scrutiny. Now might be a good time to review the persona that you are presenting, as well as your privacy settings. Even the tightest profiles can be subject to security glitches, so you need to assume that everyone can see EVERYTHING that you post, like, share or comment. We have all heard stories about people losing their job over an inappropriate tweet or an off-colour Facebook photo, not to mention scathing posts about a former employer. Don’t sabotage yourself before you even get started.

 

When tending to your professional online presence, consistency is key. Make sure your name is the same on all your profiles, including your Candidate profile on muniJOBS, by avoiding nicknames, etc. It will make it easier for employers to search you out. Make sure you are sending the same message on each of your profiles. If your muniSERV profile presents you as a well-qualified consultant, your LinkedIn profile should do the same. Ensure that all profiles are fully up-to-date with any new skills, training courses, or achievements. This might also be the time to call in some help from a pro. A dynamic biography with a summary of your strengths and experience can go a long way, especially when written from an outsider’s point of view. Consider it an extension of your CV or cover letter and outsource it to a professional for best results.

 

Some experts predict that online presence will make the resume obsolete in the next 5-10 years. In an already competitive market, this will only lead to an even larger talent pool being available with full information readily available. This is even more reason to make sure that your personal and professional profiles are in line with the image that you want to project. Increase your chances of being found by municipal decision-makers with a CAO or Consultant profile on muniSERV and/or with a Candidate’s profile on muniJOBS. Contact us for more information and get started today.

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9 Essentials to Honing Your Leading Edge and Boosting Team/Culture Performance

Many leaders feel they can’t do much to change behaviors and culture. But overwhelming research shows that’s not true. Leaders have a major impact on “the way we do things around here.” A team or organization’s culture ripples out from its members and leaders. The single biggest key to transforming a team or organization’s culture starts with its leaders defining and developing their behaviors.

Teams and department/divisions with exceptionally strong leaders build thriving peak performance local cultures even if the bigger culture they’re part of, and leader they report to, are weak. Organizational culture exists simultaneously and independently at three levels: the unit/team, department/division, and entire organization, and those micro or main cultures can be enriched at any level.

Nine elements especially stand out from this latest review of best leadership and team/culture development practices:

  1. Lead, Follow, or Wallow – highly effective leaders make critical choices to proactively change, grow, and develop rather than being changed
  2. Strong Leadership Cuts Through the Management Maze – team/organization performance is dramatically improved when good managers learn how to become great leaders
  3. Yield of Dreams – highly effective leaders tap into this infinite and renewable energy source
  4. The Heart Part – courageous conversations, two-way communications, and openness, come from, and expand, trust
  5. Coach Diem – outstanding leaders seize key coaching moments to up everyone’s game
  6. Making Teams Work – too often managers build a “scream team.” Extraordinary leaders build dream teams by boosting collaboration, cooperation, and coordination
  7. Three Core Questions Defining Your Team or Organization’s Culture – too many vision/mission/values statements are lifeless gibberish and generate a high “snicker factor”
  8. Hitting the Shift Key – the best leaders and teams act on their understanding that their culture ripples out from what they do, not what they say
  9. Setting the Culture Compass – failing to map a route through the many swamps and sinkholes of team and culture change are why 70% of these efforts die out

Rate yourself on this checklist. How’s your leadership? How’s your leadership team?

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Practical Ways Leaders Can Model Culture Change

A department, division, or organization’s culture ripples out from its leadership team. A team that wants to change “them” needs to start with a deep look in the mirror to change “us.” Organizational behavior reflects leadership team behavior. This is much like an old parenting adage, “children are natural mimics; they act like their parents despite attempts to teach them good manners.”

In their 10-year global study of leadership and culture development (published in their book Beyond Performance: How Great Organizations Build Ultimate Competitive Advantage), Scott Keller and Colin Price report, “programs in which leaders model the desired changes are four times more likely to be successful. In an organizational context, the key elements of role modeling are transformation among senior leaders, symbolic acts, and developing a cadre of ‘influence leaders.’”

Here are just a few ways leadership teams can model the behavior they want to see rippling throughout their culture:

  • Bring customers, customer advocates (salespeople are excellent ones) and front line service deliverers to key planning and operational sessions.
  • Put on an apron or pick up the phone and serve customers without being introduced as top leaders. You’ll be sending important signals. And might even learn something.
  • Serve your producers and servers. Continually ask them what the leadership team can do to help them provide higher levels of service/quality. Hold managers accountable for serving their teams.
  • Overlook weaknesses unless they’re clearly causing problems and must be addressed. Develop and nurture strengths that align with the individual’s passions and what the organization needs from him or her.
  • Celebrate, honor, cheer, applaud, reinforce, laud, praise, extol, and otherwise reinforce all behaviors that exemplify your core values and desired culture.
  • Ensure leaders are first in line for leadership and key skill development. Model those skills in meetings, coaching activities, and team decision making and planning. And having senior leaders deliver those sessions to the next level of managers infuses the training with a whole new sense of priority.
  • Search out and destroy all executive status symbols, perks, or privileges that contribute to the “we/they” gap.
  • Agree on three or four Strategic Imperatives that will strengthen your culture. Establish cross-functional teams to lead those changes and set a rigorous follow through process with regular updates to the leadership team.
  • Get unfiltered and anonymous feedback on your leadership effectiveness with 360 assessments. Build personal and team development plans around that feedback that leverages strengths and addresses any “fatal flaws.” Involve others in your personal and team development process.
  • Hold regular meetings with team members in groups and individually to discuss your leadership and culture development progress.

The most effective communication is face to face. The most believable communication is behavior.

You can watch our recent Executive Team Building and Culture Development webinar for a deeper look.

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Coaching Matters: Are You a DIY Manager Choking Growth and Development?

Good managers often have strong technical expertise and analytical skills. They love to jump into the details and resolve tough problems. Effective leaders resist the quick-fix, I-can-do-it-better-myself temptation. He or she knows such do-it-yourself projects reinforce the upward delegation cycle (“Hey, boss. Here’s another one for you to solve”). This leads to him or her becoming ever busier while team members’ growth is stunted, and the organization slows down to the pace of the stressed-out manager.

The sad story of hard driving entrepreneurs or upwardly mobile and ambitious managers choking their organization’s growth is an all too familiar one. These entrepreneurs and managers become the barrier to the organization reaching its next level of growth. These managers don’t make the transition from running operations to building a team that runs operations. Their own stunted leadership growth prevents them from making the critical transition from driving and directing to coaching and developing.

Countless studies show leaders with highly developed coaching skills have a huge impact on their team or organization’s results. For example, less than 15% of employees with leaders rated in the bottom ten percent of coaching effectiveness rate their work environment as a place where people want to “go the extra mile.” However, when leaders are rated in the top ten percent of coaching effectiveness, “going the extra mile” leaps to nearly 50% — a threefold increase. A MetrixGlobal survey found that “business coaching produced a 788-per-cent return on investment and significant intangible benefits to the business.”

This month’s Harvard Business Review features an article on “The Best Leaders Are Great Teachers.” Management professor and author, Sydney Finkelstein, (his new book is Superbosses: How Exceptional Leaders Manage the Flow of Talent) reports,

“…the best leaders I studied were teachers through and through. They routinely spent time with employees, passing on technical skills, general tactics, business principles, and life lessons… and it had a remarkable impact: their teams and organizations were some of the highest-performing in their sectors.”

A manager sees people as they are. And they’re often a growth choke point. A leader sees people as they could be — and nurtures that potential through strong coaching and development.

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Communicating and Listening Non-Judgmentally: Tools for Dealing with Mental Health Issues in the Workplace

I am finding as I train, coach and mediate that the issues in the workplace are becoming more complex. In recent events, some high profile individuals have come to the attention of the media as a result of their actions. We are finding mental health issues are more of a concern and the means to address them is less easy. In this article, I am attempting to share some tools you may want to engage in when speaking with your colleagues or employees.

Communication is not just saying words; it is creating correct understanding. Active listening is an essential skill in the communication process. Dr Marius Pickering from the University of Maine identifies four characteristics of empathetic listening.

Continue reading

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Announcing New CAMA/muniSERV Partnership!

This is an exciting new partnership for both muniSERV’s professional and municipal members!

Our professional members immediately get more exposure for their professional profile and for their ads on muniSERV – and our municipal members who are CAMA members get access to more resources and discounts off muniSERV’s paid services. 

Here’s CAMA’s Official Release:

CAMA Announces New Partnership with muniSERV.ca

CP News Release – Released on: May 29, 2018

Municipal association partnership with muniSERV.ca will benefit members nationwide

FREDERICTON, New Brunswick, May 29, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The Canadian Association of Municipal Administrators (CAMA) is pleased to announce a new partnership with muniSERV.ca – Canada’s leading online platform to connect municipalities and the businesses that serve them – that will benefit its members nationwide.

The partnership will allow CAMA members easily to find qualified consultants specializing in municipal matters, post a Request for Proposal, bid or tender, find a CAO, post a CAO job, see and submit events of interest to municipal administrators, and even sell surplus equipment.

The partnership also provides for some great discounts to other special services, including the following:

  • muniLEARN – an end-to-end collaborative learning management system platform with access to over 900 accredited digital courses for any size municipality and
  • muniJOBS – coming soon is the only online career and recruitment platform in Canada with a 100% municipal focus that provides candidates with both matching and searchable job postings.

Registration is free for CAMA members, and it takes less than a minute to join. Once a municipality is registered, any member of the team can also join and access the services available.

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Media Contacts:

CAMA: Stacey Murray, 506-261-3534, admin@camacam.ca

muniSERV: Susan Shannon, Founder & Principal, muniSERV.ca, 855.477.5095, sshannon@muniserv.ca

About muniSERV.ca

muniSERV is Canada’s leading online solution for helping municipalities and professionals connect.  We help municipalities save time and money searching for the consultants & CAOs they need, while offering professionals the opportunity to showcase their profile and services to get found and grow their business. www.muniserv.ca

About CAMA

The Canadian Association of Municipal Administrators (CAMA) is a national, non-profit association open to all Chief Administrative Officers / City Managers and any person employed in a senior management position that reports directly to a CAO. With a membership of over 600 senior municipal employees from all parts of Canada, CAMA collectively represents more than 70% of the nation’s population. www.camacam.ca

 

 

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7 Ways to be Seen as a Leader

7 Ways to be Seen as a Leader

Municipalities Need CAO Candidates with Strategic Thinking Skills, Political & Business Acumen, and Those Who Are Innovative.

Do you have what it takes?

 

Having a nice resume showing your relevant education and skills might land you the job, but you won’t be able to truly succeed as a CAO unless you have something more – strong leadership skills. There are many ways to be recognized as a leader without having to do something heroic like leading an army to war. Here are 7 ways to prove yourself as a strong leader in your municipal position:

 

COMMUNICATION

An open line of communication is vital in any relationship, especially a professional one. A good leader is always available for honest and open discussions and feedback with their team, but you must be ready to listen as much as you speak. In today’s digital world, effective communication also includes email, social media posts and nonverbal cues like body language and facial expressions.

 

LEADING BY EXAMPLE

If you aren’t committed to your job, why would you expect anyone on your team to be? A positive attitude can be contagious, but not as much as a negative one. How you approach tasks and situations will set the tone for those working with you so stay positive and enthusiastic as much as possible.

 

PROBLEM-SOLVING SKILLS

When things go wrong, and they always do, how will you react? A good leader will take ownership of any issues and work quickly to solve them, as well as prevent them from happening again.

 

RESPONSIBILITY

Everyone loves to receive praise, but how do you handle criticism and accept blame? A good leader needs to be able to accept the good and the bad without finger pointing and playing the blame game. Accept your mistake, find a solution and move on.

 

MOTIVATION

Most employees need more than a paycheque to stay engaged and interested in their job. A good leader will recognize their employees’ strengths, weaknesses and interests to make sure they feel valued, heard and appreciated. This can be as simple as a small reward for a job well done, mentoring a new hire or assigning additional responsibilities to increase involvement.

 

FLEXIBILITY
A good leader must roll with the punches. In today’s world of increased citizen engagement and councils’ need to periodically change community direction, you must be ready to change directions at the drop of a hat. Last minute changes, mishaps, covering for other employees … a leader must be able to take it all in stride and accept that nothing ever really happens when or how it is supposed to.

 

DELEGATION
If you try to do it all yourself, you are setting yourself up to fail. Some feel that assigning duties to their team shows weakness, but it is actually the sign of a good leader. Delegating tasks, while keeping your employees’ strengths in mind, gives you more time to focus on the important things.

 

The key to being a good leader can be found in the skills that you likely already have. Now it’s time to nurture and grow those skills and become the superstar you were always meant to be!

muniSERV is Canada’s leading online solution for helping municipalities and professionals connect.  We help municipalities save time and money searching for the consultants & CAOs they need while offering professionals the opportunity to showcase their profile and services to get found and grow their business.

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Strategies to Overcoming Unconscious Bias in the Workplace

Unconscious bias is hitting the news. From Bay Street to Main Street to Starbucks the impact of unspoken bias is real and harmful to the workplace. Bias stands in the way of making correct decisions in hiring and promoting. It also has a vital impact on your staff and the workplace in general. Let’s explore how we can become aware of our own bias and stop it in the workplace?

 

First, let’s define it. “Unconscious bias refers to a bias that we are unaware of, and which happens outside of our control. It is a bias that happens automatically and is triggered by our brain making quick judgments and assessments of people and situations, influenced by our background, cultural environment and personal experiences. (ECU: 2013 Unconscious bias in higher education) 

 

We all have a bias. The question is, do we identify it and then what do we do about it? In addressing one of the most crucial training issues facing the workplace today, unconscious bias, employers can assist in creating an inclusive, civil and respectful workplace. 

 

Research indicates that unconscious biases are prejudices we have, yet are uninformed of. They are “mental shortcuts based on social norms and stereotypes.” (Guynn, 2015). Biases can be based on skin colour, gender, age, height, weight, introversion versus extroversion, marital and parental status, disability status (for example, the use of a wheelchair or a cane), foreign accents, where someone went to college, and more (Wilkie, 2014). If you can name it, there is probably an unconscious bias for it.

 

Hence if we think we are unbiased, we may have unconscious adverse thoughts about people who are outside our own group. If we spend more time with people from other groups, we are less likely to feel prejudice against them.

 

This universal tendency toward unconscious bias exists because bias is rooted in our brain. Research shows that our brain has evolved to mentally put things together to make sense to us. The brain sorts all the information it is blasted with and labels that information with universal descriptions that it may rapidly access. When we categorize these labels as either good or bad, we tend to apply the rationale to the whole group. Many of the conclusions are taken from previous experiences and learnings.  

In an article, “The Real Effects of Unconscious Bias in the Workplace”, a few of the known unconscious biases that directly impact the workplace include:

  • Affinity bias is the tendency to warm up to people like ourselves.
  • Halo effect is the tendency to think everything about a person is good because you like that person.
  • Perception bias which is the inclination to form stereotypes and assumptions about specific groups that make it awkward to make an objective judgement about members of those groups. 
  • Confirmation bias is the openness for us to pursue evidence that sanctions our pre-existing beliefs or experiences. 
  • Group think is a bias which occurs when people attempt to fit into a specific crowd by mirroring others or holding back opinions and views. This results in individuals losing part of their characteristics and causes workplaces to miss out on originality and creativity.

Horace McCormick’s research found more than 150 identified unconscious biases, making the task of rooting them out and addressing them daunting. For many organizations, however, identifying as many as possible and eliminating them has become a high priority.  

 

You can address discrimination issues by increasing your awareness of your unconscious biases, and by developing strategies that make the most of the talents and abilities of your team members. 

Unconscious behaviour is not just individual; it influences organizational culture as well. This explains why so often our best attempts at creating corporate culture change with diversity efforts seem to fall frustratingly short; to not deliver on the promise they intended.

 

What you can do: 

  • Be aware consciously of your bias 
  • Focus more on the people, on their strengths
  • Increase Exposure to Biases
  • Make small changes 
  • Be pragmatic 
  • Challenge stereotypes and counter-stereotypical information 
  • Use context to explain a situation 
  • Change your perception and relationship with out-group members 
  • Be an active bystander 
  • Improve processes, policies & procedures  

Also, managers can play a crucial role in unearthing these hidden biases by declaring their intentions to be non-biased. They can also provide transparent performance appraisals that emphasis on the employee’s exceptional abilities and skills, and grow a stronger mindfulness of their own unconscious principles.

 

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Strategic Planning for Organizational Success

Let us take you through the process of developing a strategic plan that will bring to life, your organization’s vision and strategic imperatives.

 

In today’s environment, if you are standing still, you are falling behind.  Making the right decisions at the right time is critical.  Following through on those decisions is challenging.  In a survey of a broad section of CEOs, the Malcolm Baldrige Foundation learned that CEOs believed deploying strategy is three times more difficult than developing strategy.

 

The executive team’s strategic planning process must address, both the development of your key strategic imperatives and the successful execution of these strategies.  The process starts by identifying your organization’s vision and mission.  Your organization’s vision and mission should outline the development of your future direction, the key influences on how you operate and the key challenges you currently face.  Through an understanding of your organization’s operating environment and your key relationships with your customers, suppliers, partners and stakeholders, you will then be able to describe your organization’s competitive environment, ensuring that your key strategic imperatives maintain your benchmarked position.  However, the process of developing this Strategic Plan seems onerous to many and of little value to others.  In our experience, we have found that the fault lies not in the concept of Strategic Planning but rather in the process of developing the plan itself.  Let us take you through the process of developing a strategic plan that will bring to life, your vision and strategic imperatives.

 

I.               Develop a Future Vision for the Organization

 

The first step in the strategic planning process is for the President/CEO and the executive team to work together and create a compelling vision.  Creating this vision and developing the strategies to achieve it is one of the most difficult challenges for many organizations.  In this complex and fast-changing world, anticipating the future can be very difficult.  The vision is more than just a dream.  It is an ambitious view of the future that everyone in the organization can believe in, one that can realistically be achieved, yet offers a future that is better in important ways than what now exists.  When the vision is clearly articulated, everyday decisions and actions will respond to current problems and challenges in ways that move the organization toward the future vision rather than maintain the status quo.    

 

II.             Develop the Strategic Plan

 

Once the vision is developed, the executive team will follow this process to develop their strategic plan: 

 

1.     Collect customer feedback

 

Dramatic gains in overall organizational performance are very often customer driven.  Customers focus on how the organization’s delivery of products and services produce the results they’re looking for in quality, price, delivery, service, etc.   Your organization’s success depends on your ability to satisfy your customer’s needs.  In turn, this ability depends on how well the organization’s internal processes work to meet this external demand.   Understanding the customer is key to determining some of the requirements for the strategic plan. 

The leadership team must know:

 

·       Who are the customers?

 

·       How is the quality in product and service delivered to the customer measured?

 

·       How do you obtain your customer feedback?

 

·       What do you do with the information it provides?

 

2.     Collect employee feedback

 

It is essential to involve employees in the planning of strategy and direction for the department and/or organization.  Employee’s input will:

 

·       Provide insight into issues, challenges, concerns, and opportunities which may not have been known.

 

      ·       Ensure their “buy-in” during the Execution Planning Stage which will link the Strategy Development into Action Plans.

 

The leadership team will come to the strategy development session prepared to respond to questions, derived from their staff (in meetings and one-on-one sessions with them).  Questions may include:

 

·       What has been accomplished in their area(s) over the past couple of years?

 

·       What have their customers been saying about their level of service?

 

·       What have been their performance strengths, weaknesses, current goals, structure and ways of operating?

 

·       What do they see as emergent opportunities and threats?

 

·       What Benchmarking information is available and relevant?

 

·       What would staff like to see in the future?

 

·       What are the concerns and issues among staff and what do they see as the opportunities?

 

3.     Conduct Benchmarking research

 

Benchmarking is an integral part of the planning and on-going review process to ensure a focus on the external environment and to strengthen the use of information in developing plans.  Benchmarking is used to improve performance by understanding the methods and practices required to achieving world-class performance levels. 

 

Comparisons to other similar and dissimilar organizations and their departments can yield valuable insights into determining the right strategies to improve overall quality, process, procedures, structure, and so on.

 

4.     Review the current organizational and/or departmental situation

 

Each member of the leadership team will present a summary of what they’ve accomplished in their own area of responsibility over the past year.  As well, they will include any long and short-term problems that they encountered.  Essentially, we are trying to set the stage for understanding the past so that we can overcome the obstacles, which might prevent the organization from meeting it’s vision. 

 

This stage in strategy development engages the leadership team in thinking about their view of their department and areas of responsibilities and related positions.  Reports collected from customer feedback and employee input and involvement will help understand the current situation.  The questions that are raised, discussed and recorded might include:

·       What are our performance strengths & weaknesses?

·       What other strengths & weaknesses do we have?

·       What strategies do we see as necessary to bridge this gap?

·       What do we think are the organization’s current goals, structure & ways of operating?

·       What are the emergent opportunities and threats bearing on the organization from various environmental sectors? (i.e.; from customer feedback, knowledge of  present market, staff feedback)

·       What are we doing to create these opportunities and threats…not looking for blame i.e.; the economy; rather, how are we working around the real issue of the economy. 

 

 5.     Consider your “ideal” future

 

Before leadership can begin developing their future strategies they engage in a general discussion that focuses on questions to get their thinking going; nothing is recorded yet.  This step reviews:

 

  • Staff responses from earlier meetings with them, on their vision of the future, together with customer’s future needs.  As well,
  • Results from all Benchmarking research.

To define the strategic direction and determine the best focus of effort for the organization, this process requires that the leadership team consider several key questions:

 

1.     What is our dream or vision of what we want to be contributing to the organization over the next 1 – 3 years?

2.     What are the key assumptions about external circumstances that will exist in this time frame and what is our best opportunity to provide a unique contribution, based on these assumed circumstances?

3.     How do we translate this dream into action?

4.     What action plans must we develop?

5.     How will we get the financial, human and physical resources to implement our plans?

6.     What performance standards should we use to measure the quality of our effort?

7.     Do we have the commitment of others upon whom we depend?  Do our partners share our vision and performance standards? If not, how will we gain commitment?

8.     How will we measure our success?  How will we measure our contribution to building stakeholder value?

9.     What information should we monitor to alert us to external changes that require changes in our vision?

 

The philosophy behind these questions is:

·       No matter who you are or what roles you occupy in the organization, you can form a vision of what you want to be contributing over the next several years.  This requires making correct assumptions about what the organization will be like, and about your potential for making unique contributions, over the next 2-3 years.

·       Leadership engagement in discussing these issues is essential to the strategy development process because success depends on the understanding & commitment of everyone involved in making the vision a reality.

6.     Develop the Key Strategies

 

The key strategies will aim to close the gap between the present situation and the “ideal future”.  Essentially, these strategies will translate the vision of what the organization is trying to become in the customer’s eyes into reality.   It is the framework, derived from an understanding of the customer’s needs, that describes the goods and services the organization is offering, to satisfy customer needs and expectations.  Ultimately, all employees must be able to understand, accept and adopt these strategies.

 

The development of the strategies requires considerable brainstorming using various creative techniques including Affinity Diagrams, Innovation Processes and Critical Thinking Skills.  Discussions among the leadership team will take time as ideas are thrown out, discussed, weighed and evaluated.  It is important that the leadership team not eliminate any ideas too quickly.  Rather, they should combine all ideas into key strategies and allow the balance of this strategic planning process to assist in the determining which strategies should be included in the short-term plan and which are better suited to a longer-term plan.

7.     Conduct a Risk Assessment

Assessing risk must be a part of looking at the organization’s ideal future.  It includes conducting an analysis of what would prevent the organization from reaching each of the identified key strategies.  This analysis will include identifying the risks and creating mitigation plans to overcome them.  Keep in mind that:

 

·       Risk can be either the most paralyzing or the most empowering force at your disposal.

·       The situations having the greatest opportunity and high potential are probably also the ones with medium-to-high risks.  

·       These are the ones that are highly unlikely to survive the leap from Strategy Development to the Execution Plan simply because risk becomes a paralyzer. 

·       Low risk strategies, which usually have low potential, are much more likely to be implemented.

 

Become more comfortable with the risk.  You can achieve this by:

·       Insisting on creative problem-solving that focuses on reducing risk without reducing opportunity.

·       Put contingencies in place to ensure an “out” in case the worst possible scenario comes true.

·       Withhold spending in other areas to allow some needed security.

 

The risk assessment process includes:

 

    1)    Analyzing the strategies and determining the risks of either implementing them or not implementing them.  Use a cause and effect analysis and/or pros and cons and/or driving and restraining force-field analysis for examining each risk.

 

2)    Analyzing each strategy in relation to their potential cost in dollars, materials, resources, and so on.  Benchmark this analysis against expected benefits.  This cost-benefit analysis will help determine the strategies that can be completed in the short-term, longer-term and/or eliminated.

 

3)    Completing a SWOT analysis on those strategies that leadership determines to move forward with.  This helps prioritizing the strategies and determining the ones that can be realized in the shorter and longer term. 

 

·       Strengths…continue to do

 

·       Weaknesses…eliminate, change or improve

 

è Strengths and Weaknesses should consider people, money, technology, information, resources, etc.

 

·       Threats…what might prevent continued success

 

·       Opportunities…what can we start doing

 

è Threats and Opportunities should consider outside resources, information, competition, industry changes, global issues, etc.

 

4)    Identifying which strategies should stay in the Strategic Plan and which should be eliminated?  Why?

 

        5)   Identifying which strategies will be short-term (1-2 years) and longer-term strategies?

 

 8.     Create the Execution Plan

 

The Execution Planning process begins with gaining agreement to the Objectives required to meet each of the Strategies and the detailed Action Plan required to meet each Objective.  Then, adding performance measures to ensure that it is clear when each strategy and related objective has been met.  Unless the objectives identified in Execution Plan are translated into Action Plans, it is unlikely they will ever be reached.

 

This Execution Plan will include:

 

·       Who will do it?

·       What will they do?

·       When will they do it?

·       What resources are required?

·       What costs are required?

 

 III.           Summary

 

Developing a strategic plan takes discipline, foresight, and a lot of honesty. Regardless of how well you prepare you’re bound to encounter challenges along the way.  Like most everything in life, you get out of a plan what you put in. If you’re going to take the time to do it, do it right.  This means having the right people involved, analyzing the business environment and setting meaningful priorities that focus on results and making sure that your people contribute to the planning and that they understand and commit to the strategies.

 

About the Author

 

Michael Stanleigh has a reputation for helping businesses get to the root cause of their problems and generating effective solutions.  He has been fortunate to consult and advise some of the most admired organizations in the world to define their strategic direction, manage change, become more innovative, improve the performance of their leadership and manage their projects.  As a Certified Management Consultant (CMC), Certified Speaking Professional (CSP), Certified Scrum Master (CSM) and CEO of Business Improvement Architects, Michael shares his consulting wisdom and secrets for operational success to help organizations to succeed.

 

mstanleigh@bia.ca

www.bia.ca

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Train in Technology – Career Expo

Technology is meshed into every industry in some shape or form and the current and future economy will only thrive if talent is well matched to local employment opportunities. Technology drives innovation and business growth, and is critical to the future of the region’s economy.

The Barrie/Simcoe County region has experienced an influx of data centres, an emergence of global technology firms, significant growth in the number of high-tech start-ups, and an expansion of our advanced manufacturing sector. Opportunities like the Train in Technology Career Expo will build the local talent pool to ensure we have the future workforce our employers need.

muniSERV is excited to be attending the Train in Technology Career Expo.  We are also excited to be launching our new muniJOBS at this show!

muniJOBS is a new municipal career/job recruitment platform to help municipalities recruit tomorrow’s municipal leaders and for students/candidates to quickly and easily find municipal jobs.  Drop by our Booth at the Expo to find out more about this unique new website. 

We can’t wait to meet job seekers looking for municipal jobs!

This one day, not to miss, Expo is full of valuable sessions, technology industry networking and public career information.  #TrainInTech Career Expo – March 27th, 2018 from 3:00pm-7:00pm – Barrie Molson Centre. bit.ly/TrainInTech   

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