"The process provides so much more than just a good plan for the coming year. I have found that the process energizes the management team and the entire company as the plan is discussed. It enables me to evaluate the team from a number of different perspectives, for example, ability to think strategically, ability to work with each other, ability to communicate complex ideas effectively, etc. There is no question that Companion is a better operation because of our participation in this Myrna process.

Companion is A-rated because, in part, of this planning process."


Charles M. Potok, President, Companion Property & Casualty

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Our Planning Philosophy

Have you ever read a play and then attended an excellent performance of that play? Have you ever read the sheet music and then attended an excellent performance of the piece? Which form best ignited your passion?

Arthur Miller's play "The Crucible" is not meant to simply be read. It is meant to be experienced. Mozart's piano sonatas are not meant to be read as sheet music, they are meant to be heard. While the notes written on the paper don't vary, every performance is different -- the venue, interaction with the audience, the effect of weather and humidity on the instruments, and the state of mind of the performers, to mention but a few variables.

A strategic plan is not meant to be read. It is meant to be implemented. That bears repeating. A strategic plan is meant to be implemented. That implementation starts with the engagement of the hearts and souls of the senior team in a well-organized and facilitated planning meeting.

  • Soliciting independent thoughts about the organization's major issues beforehand gets individuals thinking about the future.

  • The interactions between team members as they pool their collective insights to create a short, mutually understood, prioritized, and actionable list of the current issues builds trust and understanding.

  • The building of a shared visualization of the future they are all striving to reach creates the framework that informs their daily focus and prioritization.

  • The identification of this year's focus on status quo changes accelerates motion toward the shared visualization of the future.

We get universal, positive feedback from every member of our client's team at the end our intense two-day strategic planning meetings. Every team member leaves energized to create the future they all wanted. And our facilitators experience a high greater than any the've experienced at the best Broadway show or Lincoln Center performance they ever attended.

There is a great value in having a written plan, especially one that is available shortly after the planning meeting. However, the written plan is not a replacement for the planning experience itself. The written plan serves as a tool to remind people of the discussions and decisions made in the planning meeting. To be effective, the plan needs to be one part of an ongoing strategic planning process that empowers change. Otherwise, the strategic plan will join the thousands of other strategic plans sitting on shelves collecting dust. At Myrna Associates, we believe strategic plans should create success -- not collect dust!