Planning ServicesWhen you need to guarantee broad based input, buy-in, and commitment to planning efforts, consider accessing Howick Associates' expertise and core competency in design and facilitation. For over 16 years, we have specialized in using a "whole systems" and high engagement approach to strategic, team, community, and change planning.
Strategic PlanningOur approach to strategic planning focuses on engaging key stakeholders (i.e. customers, leaders, employees, vendors, etc.) at critical points in the planning process in an effective and efficient manner. This results in a plan that more accurately reflects the current state of the organization and provides a robust set of strategic options to move the organization towards its desired future. We have had considerable success in involving large numbers of people in the planning process in a very efficient and productive manner.
We also find that in planning, there is often a great distance between stated goals and action. Thus, we spend time with you during the planning to ensure you have the processes, structure and accountabilities in place to not just create a plan but to successfully execute it.
Whole Systems Planning and Visioning
Traditional planning approaches utilize small teams (typically senior executives) or focus groups to assume responsibility for planning and communicating organizational strategy, vision, or futures. Drawbacks of this method include a lack of insight to all aspects of the organization, and a need to "sell" the remainder of the organization on what the small groups devise.
For over 16 years, Howick Associates has utilized a unique method by which a whole system is involved in an effort to conduct planning efforts in real time. Derived from ground breaking methodologies known as Future Search® or Real Time Strategic Change®, our expertise in whole systems planning helps organizations create exciting possibilities, alignment, and collaboration for their organizations.
A successful Whole Systems planning or visioning effort involves the largest possible number of people with a stake in a community or organization's future. Although the work is facilitated by on outsider, the work is self-managed by participants, working mostly in small groups of about eight people each. Discovering common ground in one of the primary goals of the process.
During the conference participants complete five tasks:
- A review and analysis of the past.
- The construction of a composite picture of everything that is happening in the present that is external to the system that will have an impact on the future.
- A look at how the system is currently responding to the present external reality, and a look at its current theory of operation.
- The development of one or more future scenarios for the system five to twenty years into the future.
- The construction of action plans for both the short and long term.
This planning method has a wide array of uses and options. Contact us to discuss your goals and how Whole Systems methods can shorten your planning and execution timelines while increasing engagement from all of your stakeholders.