We have now arrived at stage three of our four-stage Master Planning process – Intelligence. This is where the rubber meets the road. This is the stage where decisions must be made and plans developed.
While stages 1 and 2 allowed us to be aspirational and creative to reveal the Map and develop a “Great Idea”, it is at the Intelligence stage that our analytical, rational side must come into play so that we can pare down the concepts that were developed during Imagination and build a go-forward plan.
At L’Institut, we have developed a participatory process to assess concepts based on a number of business filters. Depending on the project, these filters vary based on relevance and may include ROI, ease of implementation, market size, customer engagement and differentiation in the marketplace. Using these variables, plus the Map itself, concepts are reviewed in order to determine the “best of” and, ultimately, the ideas(s) that will be taken to the next stage. This review process not only identifies the best idea(s) for further strategic development but also creates a database of ideas that have been assessed and that may be applicable in the future.
It is important that the leadership team be involved at this stage as they are the key decision makers and ultimately responsible for ensuring commitment to the idea(s). In the case of the previously mentioned luxury auto company in the UK, the senior leadership team spent a day with us to apply ROI, feasibility and customer engagement filters to arrive at a short list of the best ideas. These ideas included not only ‘low hanging fruit’ (ideas that were easily implemented and were likely to get quick results) but also bigger ideas that required more investment but had significant potential to inspire long-term brand loyalty.
Once the best idea(s) has been determined, we work together to develop a strategic plan that provides the roadmap to follow in order to prototype, pilot and rollout the new concept. And it’s imperative that those tasked with implementing the plan be involved with the development of the plan as it is only then that there is ownership, passion and commitment – all qualities that are necessary for success.
The 3 stages of Master Planning – Insight, Imagination and Intelligence – have been applied to a range of issues and challenges ranging from fundraising to reinvention. We have worked with clients in the government and not-for-profit sector, entertainment, transportation, pharmaceutical, consumer packaged goods and retail categories to name a few. But irrespective of the organization, size of the company or issue to resolve, there are certain success factors that are imperative:
- Know your ‘permission space’ in the marketplace and uncover the fundamental building blocks of your “Great Idea”
- Explore and inspire fresh thinking to develop your “Great Idea” and leverage the possibilities it now allows
- Apply different filters and perspectives to determine the best new approach and develop a detailed roadmap to bring your “Great Idea” to life
By following this formula, you will not only enable the emergence of “Great Ideas” but also engage, inspire and get commitment for the implementation of “Great Ideas” across the organization.