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April 6, 2021

The Right Way to Do Strategic Planning


Success doesn’t happen by accident; profitable companies create strategic plans and execute them accordingly

“Company culture is lacking.”

“People are operating in silos, causing mistakes and miscommunication.”

“It’s difficult to get everyone on the same page after a merger.”

“Several executives have retired in the past year.”

“Our business isn’t hitting its goals, and we’re not seeing the results we want.”

In times like these, NSCA is here to help—with custom-built strategic planning sessions led by NSCA Executive Director Chuck Wilson. Success doesn’t happen by accident; profitable companies create strategic plans and execute them accordingly.

For one organization, it was the naming of a new president that prompted the call for help. “There are so many aspects to transitioning a business,” the NSCA member explains. “We had people who could handle the legal and financial aspects, but we needed help with the culture, leadership, and strategic planning for our company’s future.” After attending a Business & Leadership Conference and talking to other integrators that experienced NSCA’s strategic planning process, they decided to try it.

The incoming president wanted to run the company a little differently: Instead of making top-down decisions, he wanted to empower workers to make their own decisions. To do this, he needed to make sure employees were set up to operate as a team.

The company also wanted guidance on combining processes and procedures after a recent merger. The newly acquired company offered managed services (bringing a small client base with it), and staff members wanted to strategically integrate these new products, services, and customers.

For an integrator on the other side of the country, it was the experience of operating in the red for four years that drove the need for strategic planning. After setting a strategy in motion, the company is now seeing a profit, better employee attraction and retention rates (thanks to a new compensation and benefits program), and improved cash flow after changing down-payment requirements.

Yet another NSCA member sought assistance as they watched business trend downward after four decades of good results. A thorough review of financials during the planning session uncovered the reason for financial losses: low technician utilization and a lack of understanding the true costs of doing business. After making procedural changes, the company improved its technician utilization rate.

“Chuck gave us fantastic and helpful information,” says an NSCA member after his first strategic planning session. “It was the right approach. He warned us that it wouldn’t be easy to readjust our thinking, but we’re working on it and meeting regularly. We’ve had struggles with forcing ourselves to refocus on working on the business instead of working in the business, but now we’re making an effort to do it with NSCA’s help.”

Because execution is where many companies veer off course, NSCA holds members accountable for their strategic plans by checking in periodically, asking for updates, and answering questions along the way.

“NSCA believes in what they’re doing, but they also truly want to help. Their goal is to support you as you figure this out. We’ve got our strategic initiatives in place, we made a plan with Chuck’s help, and we have a timeline for it. Now it’s time to execute.”

Are you hoping for a similar success story of your own? We’re ready to help.

How It Works

  1. We set aside time for your strategic planning session (one or two days, virtual or in person).
  2. We send a questionnaire for each member of the leadership team to complete, asking about current roles, company strengths, challenges and deficiencies, and goals for strategic-planning outcomes (answers remain anonymous).
  3. You use our assessment tool to rank company performance in specific categories.
  4. NSCA uses the information from completed questionnaires and assessments to develop a personalized direction for your strategic planning session.
  5. We work with you to determine strengths and weaknesses—and how you can make the most of assets and opportunities.

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