Jeffrey Hulse

AVP - Product Development, Regulatory Policy and Business Process Management at Verizon Partner Solutions

Partnering for Success: Strategic Business Planning in 2018

December 13, 2017

As the close of the year approaches, 2018 planning is ramping into high gear. Leadership teams use this time to discuss plans, goals and initiatives they will implement with the aim of delighting customers, meeting the commitments of constituents and, ultimately, guiding their organization forward.

Regardless of industry, the same question is asked in every boardroom:

“What is our strategy, and how will we achieve it?”

Some organizations will be successful in executing against the same plan that has been in place for a decade. Others see growth slowing, and find they need to reposition their business in a new addressable market. Regardless of the business cycle your organization is in, these are three key questions that business leaders need to ask:

  1. How should I start this type of business analysis?
  2. What skills are required myself, and by my teams?
  3. Which management systems should I use to measure progress?

If you ask yourself these questions and don’t have immediate answers, you may need to rebuild your organization’s strategy planning muscle.

Verizon Partner Solutions (VPS) takes the strategy challenge very seriously, and focuses on defining and refining our strategy to achieve continuous improvement against the execution of our strategic plan throughout the year.

Our strategic muscle leverages several proven methods – Playing to Win (Roger Martin) to inform strategy choices; Red Teaming (Bryce Hoffman) to mitigate risks; and The Execution Premium (Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton) to drive strategies into actions and desired outcomes.

These books have stretched our thinking and have helped our organization to see our customers, markets and competitors in a clearer light. At the core, VPS’ strategy formulation begins with the needs of our customers. These requirements are always complex, as we operate in a multi-layered market, serving our partners who – in turn – need to serve their end-user clients. We are therefore dealing with a triangulation of needs, and this must be considered when we frame our problem statement, strategic choices and possibilities.

Partnering for success is a key anchor of our commitment to delivering the digital world to VPS customers, by connecting people, places, and things across the globe. Throughout 2018, as we execute against our plan, VPS will be sharing exciting new developments which have the potential to transform our customers’ businesses.