Why Strategic Plans Need To Be Agile

Plans are sets of assumptions about the future. Making and operating from assumptions needs to happen in understanding two things about the future. The future is intrinsically unknowable and everything we do in the present makes specific things possible in the future. 

In the Agile Canvas, we revisit and revise our strategic intentions every two quarters because planning assumptions have the most credibility within two quarter planning timeframes.  There are several common unpredictables in strategic contexts, including:

  • Funding and investment shifts, new opportunities 
  • Resources available for new efforts, initiatives
  • Market shifts, new opportunities
  • New acquisition, partnership and collaboration opportunities
  • Organizational learning, innovation

The more possible these are, the wiser it is to be agile every two quarters. Agility doesn't necessarily mean changing our deepest shared intentions. It does mean taking fresh approaches to these.