Five reasons why strategy is important
The healthcare industry in Australia is one of the best in the world – around 85% of all Australians consider themselves to be in good health [Australia’s Health Care System, Facts at a Glance].
Crucial to this statistic are the many professionals, organisations and systems that support it. But while many Aussies enjoy the benefits of universal healthcare, the strain on resources for those who work within the industry is steadily on the rise.
For business owners and decision makers in health, creating a strategy (and developing strategic thinking) can be incredibly valuable – especially when dealing with numerous stakeholders.
Here are five reasons we think developing a strategy can help you make better decisions and seeing it through can help your organisation move towards what’s really important.
1. It gives you an understanding of your organisation
At its very core, strategy is vital to the success of any business decision making. At Tadashi, strategy can be formulated through a process of Discovery and Learning, where we get to know you and your goals.
A discovery piece could take the form of workshops (with stakeholders involved) to nut out all sorts of things, like what’s currently in place and the pain points. It’s where we gather as much information as we can to do a few different things, such as:
- Help create a strategy (if you don’t have one)
- Update existing processes, or
- Define stages of future work.
At a fundamental level, what this does is help you to better understand and articulate your organization's goals and direction. Your strategy will help you design your business towards a focus on the actions and activities that elicit the best performance, optimise productivity and increase profit – eg. provide the best value – right now and well into the future.
2. It helps with timelines and budgets
Strategy helps with projecting what you’re going to be doing in future, and when, rather than fumbling along and realising you haven’t spent the money you had allocated (or finding out you haven’t got money for something you really need). A good strategy will help you map out what you want to achieve, how much to budget you need to get there and how long it’s going to (ideally) take.
There are a lot of ‘bright shiny lights’ out there, so if you don’t have a clear plan, it’s easy to get dazzled by the next best thing that comes along. That means you might burn time and dollars on things that don’t necessarily align with the core of what you’re trying to accomplish.
3. It’s great for planning ahead
At Tadashi, we can help you create a three- or five-year road map of things that you want to do, one that considers any potential resources you’re going to need along the way. A strategy puts an end to retroactive thinking where organisations often say: 'if we’d have thought of that two years ago, we would’ve done things completely differently'.
In our experience, it’s best to plan upfront – don’t forget, you can evolve the plan as you go. However, be aware that going into a new venture without a plan can create anxiety and often make potential clients or investors nervous.
4. It shapes the way you think (for the better)
Particularly for larger organisations, bureaucracy often dictates the process around buying cycles and whether or not a project happens now, or in five years. It’s useful to be on the front foot with a road map and a plan – thinking strategically, not reactively, means you can respond appropriately if things don’t go the way you expect.
Learning to develop strategic thinking as a skill will help you take a step back from your business and consider what else it needs. Thinking outside of your role – for both the short- and long-term – improves your chances of making better decisions for your organisation as a whole.
5. It creates a vision and direction for all involved
Lastly, strategy helps everyone in the business align and face the same direction. A business without a strategy is like sailing into the sunset without a map or destination in mind – you’re not going to know if you’re off course or if you’ll ever arrive. If you’ve got a strategy that outlines your purpose, some appropriate goals and what success looks like, it puts you in a great position to get the most out of the resources you have.
Creating a strategy that works for you and your organisation can be a difficult thing to do while you’re also trying to keep the wheels turning. That’s where Tadashi can help – if you’re working in the health space and need some guidance in how to think strategically, get in touch.