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Colorado Workforce

Strategic Doing Pack

Ed Morrison
Linda Fowler

Denver, CO
May 12-13, 2009

This Strategic Doing Pack is designed to guide discussions in your regional meetings. It represents a set
of exercises that can help you keep the discussion focused. These exercises are tied to the Strategic
Doing Cycle. At the end of the day, you should have touched on all of the topics needed to compile a
strategic action plan.

Before you begin, you should pass around a sign in sheet to make sure that you have captured all of the
participants and their e-mails.

You should also designate one or more people to take notes. Capturing the key points of your discussion
is vitally important to moving the conversation forward. As you put these notes on the web, it enables
people to reconstruct the history of the conversation and to join the conversation at any point.

Use workshop exercises as a guide, not a recipe. Modify these exercises as you see fit to fit your

The Strategic Doing cycle

With Strategic Doing, you manage collaborations....
Managing collaborations is about managing

Strategic Collaborations are defined
by four key questions...

To keep your collaboration

focused and moving forward,
you need to ask and answer these questions...

What could we do together?

How will we What should

learn we do
together? together?

What will we
do together?

To keep your conversations
on track and focused...

Use workshop exercises and

time limits

Here are examples of these workshop


We compile them into a

“Strategic Doing Pack”

Define one to four areas of
Strategic Focus: These
Decide on a process of become the chapters in your
coming back together in 30 to Strategic Action Plan
90 days to evaluate your
progress and make

For each area of Strategic

Focus, draft at least one
Strategic Outcome

For each Strategic Outcome

define one Strategic Initiative
For each initiative, define a (project) with SMART goals
clear action plan to define to achieve your outcome
who will do what by when.

What could we do together?

What are our assets?

How can we connect them in different ways?

What new opportunities do we see?

How can we characterize our new opportunities into focus areas?

How can we describe them simply?

Define areas of Strategic Focus simply helps you organize your
“strategic focus” in Strategic Action Plan. Your plan should have
general terms between three to five areas of Strategic Focus.

Where will you focus your Each area of Strategic Focus can (and probably
efforts? should) have multiple outcomes. Areas of Strategic
Focus are typically broad. Examples: Developing
Talent with 21st Century Skills; Developing
Entrepreneurship; Supporting High Growth Clusters
Within each area of Strategic Outcomes describe a destination.
focus, define one or Descriptions of your destination should include a
more “Strategic handful of critical characteristics that define your
Outcomes” outcome.

What is your destination? Where What will our region look like, feel like when they
do you want people to go? get there? What will people be doing? How will the
world be different?

For example, a Talent outcome could be increasing

educational attainment with the following
characteristics: 1) Dramatically reduced high school
drop-out rates; 2) Post secondary plans for all high
school graduates; 3) Expanded internships for all
high school students.

Strategic Outcome
Strategic Focus

Certified STEM teachers

Develop Talent with

21st Century Skills Project based learning in
STEM disciplines

Pipeline of technicians trained in

Support high growth
companies in high growth
clusters Skill assessments to identify solid

Strengthen regional Skills-based training in regional

leadership and collaboration leadership

Workshop Exercise 1 (Page 1 of 3):
Explore Focus Areas and Outcomes
Fill out up to four opportunities on this
page and the next

What are the opportunities we

What are the assets we can What is a “short hand”
see when we connect these
connect? description of this opportunity?

Opportunity 1

Opportunity 2

Workshop Exercise 1 (Page 2 of 3):
Explore Focus Areas and Outcomes

What are the opportunities we

What are the assets we can What is a “short hand”
see when we connect these
connect? description of this opportunity?

Opportunity 3

Opportunity 4

What should we do together?
What has the highest
potential payoff?

What is the easiest to achieve?

Which outcome can create the most


Which outcome has the best chance of attracting other partners?

Pick one focus area to complete the Strategic Doing Cycle

Our Focus area is:

Workshop Exercise 2 (Page 3 of 3)
Define Outcomes in terms of

Characteristics of your Outcome

Possible Strategic Outcomes for your Focus Area What can we measure?
What does success look like? How will things be different?

Outcome 1:

Outcome 2:

Workshop Exercise 3 (Part 1)
Connect Outcomes to Initiatives

Copy your your most promising Describe one strategic initiative (project) for your outcome
Strategic Outcome from the previous Example: Increase the number of teachers with STEM
exercise here: certifications

What is the project?


Initiatives need to be defined in term of SMART Goals

Aggressive, but Achievable

Workshop Exercise 3 (Part 2)
Define Initiatives with SMART Goals
(or project milestones)
Name of the Initiative:

For this initiative

We will do this....
by this date....

We compile a list of the number of STEM certified teachers
September 2009

What will we do together?
What are the most critical
action steps in the next
thirty days?

Who will commit to doing what?

Who will commit to putting this work on line?

Workshop Exercise 4 (Page 1 of 1)
Connect Initiatives to an Action Plan for
the next 30-90 days

Name of the Initiative:

Action step Responsible By When

How will we learn together?
What steps will we take to
get connected on line?

When will we next meet to revise our work?

Workshop Exercise 5
Connect Your Work
to a Process of Continuous Learning

Date of our next review of our Strategic Action Plan:

Learning Step Responsible By When

Summarize our work from these discussions and put it on the

Web (one line)

Set time and place for our next review (face to face)

Other steps we can take to stay connected:

With this network form of organization, we
are overseeing 50+ initiatives in four areas of
strategic focus with a full time staff of 2
people...Our approach is to transform the
existing systems through “swarm innovation”