A key feature of a successful strategy is that it is signed off by relevant stakeholders within the organization. This will often just be your boss. Sometimes, it might be a broader group of stakeholders.
The most common mistake here is to present stakeholders with a comprehensive strategic plan to sign off instead of a strategy. There are some clear challenges with this:
- The bigger the plan the longer it will take for stakeholders to read. Every additional page reduces the number of people who will read it. Your entire community project might be slowed down not because the strategic plan is good or bad, but simply because it’s long.
- If you present an entire strategic plan to stakeholders, stakeholders will often comb through and pick apart every detail. This takes a lot of time and is not likely to lead to the best outcome. This happens partly through an idealized sense of self-importance and partly through the transferral of responsibility. If they approve a strategy and you fail to implement it, it’s your fault. If they approve an entire strategic plan and it doesn’t work out, it’s their fault.