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SNQ Methodology Pt. 2 – Strategy

January 31, 2011

Hi everyone.  My blog for this week is on the second part of the SNQ Methodology.  A few weeks back I provided an overview of the first step in the process, which is “Discovery”.  This week I’m going to cover the next step, which is “Strategy” – one of my favorites.

Rudy Giuliani once said “Change is not a destination, just as hope is not a strategy”. Good quote.  Too often people think that if they hope and wish enough, or even just work harder, things will be successful.  Unfortunately, whereas hard work certainly can get you through many rough times, frequently it isn’t enough.  As my colleges around me are used to hearing, often we just need to work smarter.

The Strategy portion of our methodology is all about planning.  We take the information we learned from the Discover phase, and plan out our approach.  This may involve obvious topics such as the schedule or time frame, roles and project ownership, deliverables, etc.  For me this involves taking it much further though.  Not to be insensitive or anything, but I generally want a project or engagement planned out so well, that if whoever planned it ends up as a pancake in the middle of the road, I could pull a stranger off the street, hand them the plan, and they could fill in.

These days a strategy for us involves considering all angles and every potential impact – SEO strategy, Social Media integration, User learning curve, what programming tools are we going to use, is the client’s culture prepared, how do we measure success, and most of all, how do we know when we’re “done”.

The deliverable for this phase is pretty straight forward – it’s the Strategic Plan for the project or engagement.    To really distil it down, the “must haves” for this are:

  • Complete Ownership
  • Specific Time frames
  • Defined Deliverables – again, make sure everyone knows the definition of “done”.

Successful planning is what separates a failed or even mediocre project from an excellent project.  It is also what separates an outstanding leader or manager from one who is just along for the ride.


3 Comments leave one →
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