Text of an unsolicited letter from the Managing Director of a plc Business Services provider.
"With the last of the scheduled workshops now completed, I wanted to write and thank you for the value that you have added to our businesses through the Strategic Thinking Workshop process."
"I know that the feedback from the participants at all five workshops was extremely positive. People liked your methodology, enjoyed the debates, supported the strategies that emerged and applauded the role that you played as a facilitator. In fact, I see that our normally hard-nosed managers were positively effusive in their praise for you, there was even one cryptic comment that you were “one of the best I have been involved with”."
"From my point of view, I can see that the process has moved each of the businesses forward, in terms of giving them clear direction and setting the priorities for action. Given the very different nature of our operations, that outcome is a real testament to the quality and flexibility of your Strategy Workshop process."
"I think that the other important feature of the process was that it forced our managers to think strategically and showed them what types of things to think about strategically. This kind of jackets-off thinking is something which I will encourage going forward as we week to restore the fortunes of our company."
"Congratulations once again on a job well done. I certainly wish you all the best with your business and hope we will work with you again in the future."
“Although we are accustomed to formal strategic planning, the Strategy Workshops approach has proved to be the most powerful discipline we have encountered.
The outputs of the process have resulted in both strategic and operational plans to deliver our vision. For the first time staff at all levels now know what they have to deliver individually to achieve the overall plan and what they are buying into.
No company with a vision can afford not to undertake the Strategy Workshops approach.”
A quality output of strong and identifiable high level messages
Cost effective compared to "traditional management consultants"
The answers come from the business, not from some hired guru
The output is readily understood by others in the company
High level issues identified and set down
Targets are clearly identified for delivery
Very high level of buy in from participants
“Our approach to developing Business Strategy has been a two-stage process. In the initial years, 1996 – 1998, we debated and developed our strategy using a free-for-all approach with the Company Managing Directors and Corporate Group in planning and syndicate sessions with a fairly informal facilitation (Chair of Strategy) in a couple of the best International Business Schools.
Thereafter, we switched to a more structured and rigorous approach using Strategy Workshops for the last two strategic reviews. My view, and that of my colleagues, is that your company format and your own competence in managing the processes was efficient, beneficial and enjoyable and brought the proper balance and output between the creative and setting of our practical goals for future decisions.
We continue to use the outputs of our strategic reviews as an integral part of our business plans and are likely to use your services in the future.”