Over the years I have seen and maybe even made some of the following mistakes when embarking on a strategic planning process. It is important to acknowledge the mistake and to grow from it.
Not receiving the appropriate training on how to facilitate. Facilitation is more than just making sure everyone is heard. It involves planning, more planning, and more planning. What are the meeting goals? Did you set ground rules? How will you manage conflict? What techniques will be used to cultivate complete participation?
Learning various strategic planning models. There is no ‘one size fits all’ to this process. Some groups will require conventional, issues-based, or real-time planning. Knowing when to use the right model is key.
The planning process was not planned before the group came together. Planning beforehand allows the facilitator to ask questions such as - what cultural considerations are needed? What model should we use? What is the purpose of this planning process?
Not encouraging ongoing strategic thinking and instead mistakenly focusing on one-shot inspiring and motivational experiences.
These mistakes can derail a strategic planning process, causing an organization to lose its way. Recognizing these mistakes and having a plan in place to avoid them will lead you down the right path.