Guide to Value-Based Planning for Robust Enterprise Agility

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Agile Meridian's Introductory Guide to Value-Based Planning for Robust Enterprise Agility

by: Michael Jebber

Today's businesses must rapidly sense and respond to changing customer needs, emerging opportunities, and market disruptions. Twenty-plus years of empirical evidence show that traditional annual planning cycles limit enterprise agility. Today’s businesses need an adaptable, sustainable approach to value-based planning and delivery to meet the challenges continuous change presents.

This guide provides a new approach to planning focused on delivering value, not output. Learn how to:

Develop value-based visions and outcome-oriented roadmaps. 

Rather than features, focus your vision and roadmaps on the business outcomes and impact you want to achieve. Make them measurable so you can evaluate success.  Consider both your customer outcomes and your business impact jointly.

Leverage rolling wave planning to gain flexibility.

How we plan matters.  You can still plan high-level value-based objectives by year. The pivot comes in when we detail those plans.  Only plan out details quarterly, keeping future quarters at a high level. This gives you the agility to change course as conditions evolve.

Prioritize initiatives by cost of delay and impact mapping. 

Use the cost of delay to quantify initiative urgency. Map out business impacts to gauge potential initiative ROI. Rank your priorities by these factors, not gut feel.

Adopt innovation accounting to make evidence-based investment decisions.

Take a venture capital approach to funding initiatives. Set clear targets, fund in stages based on evidence, and cut losses if targets aren't hit.  Doing so keeps value at the center of focus at all times.

Continuously reallocate resources and talent to the best opportunities.

Keep resources and talent flexible across initiatives rather than fixed. Shift them to where they will have optimal impact as you learn.  If you do not know how to do this, get good at it…fast!  Nothing is more critical than having all your capabilities and assets available to tackle the “next big thing.”

Establish feedback loops to course-correct in-flight initiatives.

Build regular check-ins to measure progress, customer response, and market feedback. Adjust initiatives based on what you learn.  This is your corporate PDCA cycle.  There are many ways to do this successfully, so investigate a few and start leveraging one you can see yourself leveraging.

Cultivate a test-and-learn mindset across the organization.

Take an experimental, iterative approach. Validate in the market before scaling. See failures as learnings to adapt to.  Make this a corporate “regular” so the entire organization can emulate your approach at different levels of organizational leadership.

If you are unfamiliar with the terminology presented in this guide, don't worry…

Many leaders who read this will be new to some of the terminology in this guide.  If you are one of those leaders, you still have time to get knowledgeable, but you must get up to speed quickly.  Leaders we work with today are learning and wielding the elements provided in this guide with measurable success.  If you endeavor to be a front-runner in your industry, you will need to wield them proficiently as well.

With value-based planning, you can build dynamic Enterprise Agility to rapidly reorient your business, seize new openings, and adapt to changing conditions for sustained success.

This introductory guide draws on Agile Meridian's deep expertise in enabling enterprise business agility at scale. Request an advisory session to get started on your agility transformation today!

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