The joys of being a kid can teach us a lot about strategic planning

This post is excerpted from the Kaulkin Ginsberg Q3 2011 M&A Report. To read the full article and learn much more about the current environment for mergers and acquisitions in the outsourced business services (OBS) industry, click here to download the full report now.

Mike Ginsberg

After answering the hard, gut-check questions in yesterday’s blog, it is time to focus on the upcoming strategic planning session.  Do you think it is time to change your approach to improve results?  If the answer is yes, consider the following four suggestions for change that come right from a typical elementary school classroom:

1.        Assign daily quiet time to read.  For example, every day at 11am give your staff 30 minutes to read business-related subject matter at his/her desk.  This can be online if you provide your employees Internet access (shameless plug #1 – makes for valuable reading every day) or by handing out industry related periodicals.  You get the picture.  Stay focused for 30 minutes.  No checking fantasy football results or emails!

2.       Networking recess.  Plan a time to really schmooze with a colleague, meet with a business acquaintance for breakfast or lunch, or join a local association and schedule time to participate.  Stepping out of your shell on a regular basis is a worthwhile exercise, much like kids’ need to run around at recess.

3.       Guest speakers.  Do you remember as a child when a parent came into your class and told you what he or she did for a living? Wasn’t that cool?  Wouldn’t it be cool to bring in a guest to your strategic planning session?   Maybe perspective from local recovery manager or a state regulator (depending upon how big your call center is).  Maybe you should engage an industry expert to fly in and talk to your team (shameless plug #2:  Kaulkin Ginsberg staff members make great speakers).

4.       Think of conferences like school assemblies.  For kids, assemblies break up the school week quite nicely.  For adults, attending trade shows or local gatherings offers new perspectives and fresh insights into old routines. Assess the roster of people you typically send to conferences. Would another individual—or your organization as a whole—benefit from mixing up your face to face event lineup, even once in awhile? Or for a lower-cost alternative, consider hosting a smaller-scale roundtable event in close to where you live and work.

Now is the time to harvest your best ideas for 2012.  Here’s to a prosperous fall planning season.

And be sure to download your free copy of the Kaulkin Ginsberg Q3 2011 M&A Report today! It’ll make for some nice October weekend reading.

Mike Ginsberg is the President and CEO of Kaulkin Ginsberg Company. He spearheads all of Kaulkin Ginsberg’s advisory business services. Mike has been a keynote speaker at every major industry convention, and has lectured on issues such as “How M&A is Reshaping Accounts Receivable Management” and “The Future of the ARM Industry. Follow him on Twitter at @mike_ginsberg.

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