Strategy Scoping

Getting strategy right is vital for organisational success. A good strategy sets you apart from your competitors and unites everyone in the organisation behind a common sense of purpose.

Strategy development, however, is the least structured and systematic part of the entire strategy lifecycle. It can even be chaotic and biased, resulting in a very different strategy from the one you might have produced if the process was better planned

Goal Atlas are strategy experts – in particular, we are strategy-process experts. We facilitate systematic, evidence-based and thorough strategy scoping and management by your leaders and teams. We are also independent and can add innovation and agility to existing ways of working.

Our strategy scoping service writes the brief for strategy development. It ensures the strategy you develop is rigorous and fit for purpose, setting both signposts and milestones for strategy development.

Strategy Scoping has two objectives:

  1. To help you make initial decisions about what is in-scope for your forthcoming strategy and assemble a body of evidence to explain and justify those decisions.
  2. To propose what needs to be done during strategy development, who needs to be involved and how key strategic decisions are going to be made, validated and ratified.

The key benefits of Strategy Scoping are that:

  1. Strategy development becomes a lot simpler, more straightforward and more purposeful by identifying why the strategy is needed, which decisions need to be made and what evidence is needed to make them.
  2. Strategy development becomes more transparent and hence can lead to more and better quality involvement across the organisation
  3. Strategy development becomes less biased, more evidence based, more data-driven and hence a lot easier to explain and justify.

Over the longer term, a simpler, more transparent and more justifiable strategy will be more readily engaged with, more willingly committed to and more eagerly adopted.  It is more likely to achieve the strategic success it defines for itself.

These are benefits for the Executives and the Board who will ultimately own the strategy, the Strategy Team who will be developing and launching the strategy and the Planning Team who will be resourcing its success.

What Strategy Scoping involves

Strategy Scoping invloves three distinct but interrelated activities:

  1. Horizon Scoping: What is coming towards you, over the horizon, that your new strategy needs to respond to?
  2. Development Scoping: What work is needed to develop your strategy?
  3. Acceptance Scoping: What principles will you use to determine if your strategy, once written, is good enough to launch?

Strategy Scoping can provide value in four ways:

  1. Scoping gives direction and focus to the forthcoming strategy;
  2. Scoping specifies and guides the programme of work needed to complete strategy development;
  3. Scoping clarifies the practicalities involved in actually developing a strategy (e.g. roles and responsibilities, resourcing, timescales);
  4. Scoping avoids cognitive biases that can affect strategy development.

Goal Atlas’ Strategy Scoping Services

Strategy Scoping is undertaken as a single sprint and typically takes between 4 and 6 weeks. Our scoping services can include initial data analysis, stakeholder interviews, scoping workshops and follow-up analysis, according to your needs.

Our aim is to provide you with documentation that can be used to inform, frame, guide and manage the strategy development process and we will provide this in whatever format is easiest for you to use (typically an in-depth slide presentation with links to documents, spreadsheets etc.)

Read more about ‘The Case for Strategy Scoping’ in our Strategy Distilled newsletter article.