To determine WOTS MOST IMPORTANT?®, review the Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats, and Strengths ("WOTS") to clarify the Mission, Objectives, Strategies, and Tactics ("MOST"). First, examine external issues affecting the planning process; look at several of the most important Opportunities and Threats. Then consider your response to external issues in light of your company’s internal Strengths and Weaknesses. After reflecting on the most important external and internal issues, clarify the plan. Do this by defining the Mission, Objectives, Strategies, and Tactics.

Create the Mission in full view of the organization's vision and core values. To test the validity of the plan, see if all decision makers agree to execute the plan while following a budget and project management document that all decision-makers affirm. Ideally, the decision-makers should include a board of qualified advisers who prayerfully help the business owners and managers execute the plan and realize the objectives.

The following outline applies this WOTS MOST model to building a successful organization.
  1. Examine the most important issues in the external and internal environment
    1. External Issues
      1. Opportunities
      2. Threats
    2. Internal Issues
      1. Strengths
      2. Weaknesses
  2. Clarify the plan based on the organization’s vision and core values.
    1. Mission:
    2. Objectives
      1. Objectives should be quantified – both in concise targets for each business area and in a detailed pro forma for the next four quarters. (A less detailed pro forma should show objectives for the next four years.)
      2. Objectives should generally be in the following areas:
        1. Revenue
        2. Client Satisfaction:
        3. Productivity:
        4. Growth and Innovation:
        5. Employee Satisfaction:
        6. Earnings:
        7. Image & Reputation:
    3. Strategies
      1. Strategies consistent with the corporate objectives should be listed as strategic elements in each job description (in order to keep each staff member focused on what is most important.)
      2. Key strategic areas are listed below:
        1. Accounting (Developing efficient reporting to monitor fulfillment of goals and quarterly variances; maintaining a web-dashboard with key data for decision makers available 24-7)
        2. Administration
        3. Budgeting (Updating pro formas and linking compensation to productivity)
        4. Banking
        5. Computers (Managing a web server, exchange server, SQL server, PCs, printers, and scanners)
        6. Communication systems (Coordinating telephones, internet, faxes, postal, and other communication systems.)
        7. Databases (Effectively producing management reports, financial reports, client reports, etc.)
        8. Legal (Monitoring compliance checklists)
        9. Insurance (Managing risks with appropriate agreements and insurance)
        10. Management (Clarifying mission, objectives, core values, appeals process, etc.)
        11. Marketing
        12. Personnel
        13. Production
        14. Property (Maintaining a suitable physical plant; e.g., office and parking leases)
        15. Strategic Planning
        16. Training
        17. Spiritual (Educating staff about upholding the firm's core values and showing concern for the calling of each staff member)
    4. Tactical "to do" task lists
      1. Task Lists
        1. Who
        2. What
        3. When (started and due)
        4. Priority
      2. Maintain a secure task list website with a separate tab for each staff member. On a regular basis, show each staff member how the tactical tasks are consistent with the strategic elements in the staff member’s job description, and show how the strategic elements are consistent with the quantified corporate objectives, which are fully consistent with the corporate mission and vision.
  3. Execute!
    1. Communicate marketing messages based on the above mission.
    2. Communicate a clear budget based on the above objectives.
    3. Develop job descriptions with strategic initiatives and key performance indicators ("KPI") based on the above strategies.
    4. Follow a clear project management critical path based on the above tactical "to do" tasklists.
    5. Show how fulfillment of tactical "to dos" helps the organization realize key performance indicators in each strategic area while fulfilling measurable objectives consistent with the mission and vision.
© 2017 Tim Voorhees, JD, MBA