[September 19, 2013] Major General Joe Robies, Jr., the president and CEO of USAA, wrote about “getting on plan” in the Fall 2013 USAA insurance magazine. He was giving good advice to USAA members to establish a financial retirement plan and get on it.
Of course, we all will agree with MG Robies. We can carry his idea further into the realm of special activities by senior executive leaders. Planning itself is a very involved activity that must align with the strategy of the organization. Planning is a major process in and of itself (upcoming blog post). Remember that planning is for the future.
But getting on plan and staying there is another thing altogether. It is the responsibility of the senior executive leader to ensure the plan is followed and if necessary to be flexible enough to make legitimate adjustments to the plan.
Development of measurable milestones is one technique that is used to assist the leader to see whether interim goals are being met and activities are on plan. While there may be a number of techniques, and procedures to check progress on the plan, there is no substitute for direct involvement by the senior leader who knows the direction of the organization.
Personal, undeviating involvement by senior executive leaders is a requirement to ensure an organization’s path is followed.