From the Managing Director of a package holiday provider

“Prior to May 2000 we had developed our business strategies on a regular basis as a management team without any external input.  However I formed the view that we lacked a formal process to enable us to develop a concise and consistent strategy.

Roger Handley assisted us to develop our strategy in May 2000 and we found the strategic thinking process to be straightforward, practical, logical and enjoyable.  The strategy document produced has become a key document in the business.  It is regularly checked, reviewed and enhanced.

Since the strategic thinking review the business has grown organically and it has increased its market share mainly as a result of delivery of the key strategic issues that the process identified.

As a business, our use of external consultants or facilitators is very, very limited, however we are confident that our investment was worthwhile and in addition the whole team thought that Roger’s facilitating skills were first class.”

The Managing Director of a food technology business wrote:

“I thought you would be interested to know that at our Executive Planning Committee last week we reviewed the project you conducted with us, as planned, six months after the workshop was completed.  The general consensus is that the process has provided us with outstanding benefits.

As you know, we embarked on our Strategic Thinking Project because we needed to review the strategic basis on which our Corporate Development Plan had been based in view of the changes that had occurred in our Industry.  The review was to be more fundamental than we would have contemplated in our usual annual review.

We now have a new five-year plan, which essentially addresses nearly a dozen high priority issues to enable us to achieve our business strategy.

The added bonus is that the process has provided us with an approach ideally suited to the new standards, ISO 9001:2000 to which we are transferring and which itself requires focus on continual improvement, customer satisfaction and new product development processes, all of which we identified together as essential issues.

I have pleasure in enclosing a copy of our Strategic Profile, which is a printed version of our company wide statements and our Business Policy and which is the outcome of our work together.  Every member of our staff has a copy and I thought you might wish to have one also.

Our experience reflects very well on “Strategy Workshops” and indeed your own ability, commitment and perception.  On behalf of all of us please accept our thanks for a job well done!” 

Feedback from the Managing Director of a clothing design, sourcing and supply company

“We have all found the work that we have completed with you extremely useful and interesting and in particular the very clear way that we reached the key decisions that we set out to finalise and agree upon.

 We feel confident that the future strategic direction is now understood and that the opportunities that we have identified are achievable and very exciting.

 Thanks again for your help and guidance during the workshop and the well written and precise summaries that you sent to us, so promptly, after each session.”

Feedback from the Managing Director of a technical components manufacturing business

“We used this process firstly with our subsidiary company and found the experience highly worthwhile as we were able to develop a clear strategy in an efficient two day period.  The issues developed helped us to focus the business through a difficult time and enabled us all to commit to the necessary course of action.

The successful session at Cambridge prompted me once again to use your process and you as a facilitator for our last corporate strategic review.  In view of the long hours needed to complete the work sessions at Cambridge we decided to hold this session over three days.  This session helped iron out the differences in opinion that some of the management team held about the true nature of our business.  The strategic heartbeat concept was exceptionally beneficial and has made absolutely clear to all the team exactly where we should be allocating our resources.

The strategic thinking process has coordinated our planning, developed understanding and agreement as to our objectives and given the businesses direction.  It was very cost effective and provided us with clear hard copy documents that we all refer to.  In particular I find the output reports very useful when reviewing progress and during management meetings.”

Feedback from the Strategy Director of an international engineering project management company

“Thank you for once again facilitating a strategic thinking session for our senior management team.  As you know this is the third time you have worked with us in this way and the sessions have proved to be very valuable in helping us develop a clear strategy and direction for the company.  Your facilitation skills have helped to keep us focused in the subject and enabled us to develop relevant output from the sessions.  Given the pace of change in both our industry and our company I feel sure we will be returning to this process in the not too distant future"

Feedback from the Chief Executive of a specialist printing organisation

This is just a brief note to congratulate you on the way in which you have developed your Strategic Thinking Workshops.  When you were involved with our team you clearly helped them to identify their "Strategic Heartbeat".  This left us with more clarity and also a valuable process upon which to base future strategic planning meetings.