Strategic Business and Operations Framework Understanding the Framework June 30, 2012

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1 Strategic Business and Operations Framework Understanding the Framework June 30, 2012

2 Table of Contents The Pathway to Success: The Strategic Business and Operations Framework... 3 What is the Strategic Business and Operations Framework?... 3 Who should use the Strategic Business and Operations Framework?... 3 How should the Strategic Business and Operations Framework be used?... 3 Overview of the Strategic Business and Operations Framework... 4 Definitions... 5 What are the values?... 5 What are the guiding principles?... 6 What are the attributes?... 7 What is the life-cycle process?... 8 Strategic Business and Operations Framework Checklist by Life-Cycle Step... 9 Strategize... 9 Engage Plan Execute Review/Learn Enhance Page 2 of 15

3 The Pathway to Success: The Strategic Business and Operations Framework As leaders, designers, and innovators, our role is not only to solve problems, but also to shape our world. To accomplish this, we must not only design the methods and approaches people will use to solve problems, but also renew the ways in which we interact with and educate our students. ~President G.P. Peterson, The Georgia Tech Strategic Vision and Plan What is the Strategic Business and Operations Framework? The Strategic Business and Operations Framework is a philosophy and decision-making model for how Georgia Tech will work towards achieving the goals of the institute and relentlessly pursue institutional effectiveness (Strategic Plan - Goal 5). The intent of this model is to illustrate the concepts that should be at the heart of all business operations and decisions on campus. Everyday actions should embrace the spirit of the Strategic Vision and Plan s values and this model s guiding principles. Projects and initiatives should consider the stages of the life-cycle process during development and implementation. By visibly illustrating and openly discussing this framework and its attributes, these ideals will embed themselves into Georgia Tech s culture. Thus, the model becomes an automatic and natural guide for behavior and decision-making. Who should use the Strategic Business and Operations Framework? The simple answer is that everyone in Georgia Tech s community should strive to guide their actions according to the concepts in this framework. More directly, the framework, the guiding principles and associated attributes, and the life-cycle process is easily applicable to process owners, project leaders, managers, individuals leading change, and other staff at Georgia Tech. How should the Strategic Business and Operations Framework be used? Many questions are implied by each of the framework s guiding principles. (Examples are highlighted at the end of this document.) On an ongoing basis, these questions should guide our actions and decisions around strategy, planning, and execution of our decisions and initiatives in order to result in successful outcomes. When initiating change, process owners and /or project leaders and staff should specifically consider questions associated with the life-cycle steps (outer ring of the diagram). These questions will assist leaders in identifying components of the principles that will be embodied in the initiative at every step. This model is not intended to imply a need for a documented business case with detailed responses to every question itemized below for every operation, decision, and/or project undertaken. However, the questions do provide a useful checklist for validating applicability to Georgia Tech s culture, and the way we do business. Page 3 of 15

4 Overview of the Strategic Business and Operations Framework The Strategic Business and Operations Framework is a philosophy and decision-making model intended to provide a guide and develop expectations for how Georgia Tech will work towards achieving the goals of the institute and, in particular, relentlessly pursue institutional effectiveness (Strategic Plan Goal 5). The framework is comprised of three elements: The core values and guiding principles for which business will be conducted at Georgia Tech form the nucleus of the model. The core values are identified and communicated in Georgia Tech s Strategic Vision and Plan an d are located in the center of this model, with the guiding principles represented as nodes surrounding the core values. Together, the core values and guiding principles illustrate and influence an aspirational culture. The life-cycle process for initiating change (e.g., projects, policies, practices, etc.) both encircles and is influenced by the ideals in the nucleus. It is comprised of the following concepts: 1) Strategize, 2) Engage, 3) Plan, 4) Execute, 5) Review and Learn, and 6) Enhance. Although the process is generally chronological and cyclical, the bi-directional arrows indicate that the life-cycle process is iterative and, depending on the circumstances, an earlier step in the process may be revisited. Figure 1: Strategic Business and Operations Framework Diagram Page 4 of 15

5 Definitions What are the core values? The core values listed in the Framework s nucleus are derived from Georgia Tech s Strategic Vision and Plan. They are: Integrity o Maintain the highest ethical standards o Nurture a culture of honesty, openness, and transparency Excellence o Maintain the highest academic, research, and administrative standards o Have a passion for continuous improvement o Embrace change that enables progress o Celebrate achievement Impact o Seek and conduct research that identifies and solves critical global challenges o Focus on societal benefit and improving the human condition Innovation o Advance groundbreaking research o Leverage technology to create new fields of study o Encourage and reward originality of thought, approach, and action o Push boundaries o Nurture a culture of curiosity Entrepreneurship o Support an entrepreneurial environment o Promote an enterprising spirit Leadership o Provide pioneering thought leadership o Anticipate change and shape the future o Develop future leaders with superb problem-solving ability o Commit to public service Community o Project a welcoming, inclusive culture o Demonstrate mutual respect among faculty, staff, and students o Celebrate uniqueness in thought, background, perspectives, and intellectual pursuits Page 5 of 15

6 What are the guiding principles? Guiding principles are the areas of focus that define how business will be conducted at Georgia Tech. Five guiding principles are represented in the Strategic Business and Operations Framework. They are: 1. People. An organization is its people. This element of the framework underscores the importance of developing our people and enabling each individual to make the greatest possible contribution to Georgia Tech's continuing success. 2. Partnership. Building enduring collaborations and partnerships between faculty, researchers, and staff, as well as within and among units, is a hallmark of leading organizations. It is an essential contributor to organizational effectiveness and efficiency. Leveraging partnerships across the Institute will be a powerful driving force enabling Georgia Tech's future success. 3. Infrastructure. Continuous improvement of infrastructure (technology, facilities, and equipment) is imperative in today's world. Georgia Tech should prioritize and act upon strategic infrastructure investments in order to keep pace with societal changes and improve efficiency, as well as support the strategic plan initiatives. 4. Communication. Communication is a critical factor in the success of organizations. Effective and consistent internal communications enable an organization to achieve its potential. Transparent processes encourage dialogue, increase accountability, and remove uncertainty. When delivered through appropriate media, all constituents can be made aware of progress occurring in areas where they can contribute. By minimizing uncertainty through communications, all involved will be able to plan effectively. 5. Accountability. Understanding and acceptance of the mission and values of the organization is the first step toward creating and nurturing responsibility and transparency of actions and decisions. Our expectations of ourselves and others reflect a sense of purpose in accomplishing our mission, while our actions and decisions are aligned with the mission and values. Page 6 of 15

7 What are the guiding principles attributes? The attributes are the characteristics that further define the guiding principles. The attributes for each of the five guiding principles are: 1. People Superior talent and high ethical standards People who are passionate about the Institute s mission and exemplify the values in contributing to its success A culture that values diversity, individual roles, responsibilities, and accountability Enhanced investment in professional development, leadership development, career planning, and mentoring Performance-based recognition 2. Partnership Shared sense of mission and ownership across all units, reinforced by culture and values Integrated collaboration and coordination among stakeholders / customers (faculty, staff, students) partnering and developing solutions Cross-functional implementation and assessment teams Engagement of academic research expertise in creating institutional effectiveness Mutual trust and respect demonstrated among faculty, staff, and all other stakeholders 3. Infrastructure Strategic investments (technology, facilities, equipment) and continuing financial support reflect stakeholder requirements in instruction and research Reduced administrative burden for faculty, researchers, and staff Institute-wide business and operations that effectively support stakeholders Effective enterprise-wide information systems, planning tools, and access to data to support management decisions Disciplined and results-oriented management approaches Customer-oriented and effective business processes that leverage technology and are regularly refined 4. Communication Executive leadership, vision, and priorities are clearly stated in various media Well-defined, targeted approaches to communications that are aligned with the natural modes of stakeholders (e.g. multimedia, face-to-face interactions) Disciplined communications related to new initiatives, including regular communications at logical points in projects and implementation with all internal and external stakeholders Well-developed feedback processes enabling ongoing refinement of communication including rewards, awards / recognition and sharing 5. Accountability Leaders providing clear direction and parameters for action Action-owners and decision-makers are identified and acknowledge their responsibilities Clear options evaluated using criteria based on Georgia Tech s core values and vision Decisions that are made and executed at the appropriate levels Metrics-based performance monitoring which is valued and implemented Financial stewardship Page 7 of 15

8 What is the life cycle process? The life-cycle process is comprised of six steps to be taken when initiating change. (This process is represented in the outer ring of the Strategic Business and Operations Framework.) As noted in the Overview, although the process is chronological and cyclical, the bi-directional arrows indicate that the life-cycle process is iterative and, depending on the circumstances, an earlier step in the process may be revisited. 1. Strategize. Strategize is the action of identifying and defining a business requirement or opportunity, determining its appropriateness with respect to the organization s mission, and considering what its array of impacts might be. One or more goals are defined, critical success factors are determined, and a scope and approach for achieving the goal(s) are identified. 2. Engage. Engage is the process of involving others for purposes of gaining their feedback and perspectives, as well as developing a common meaning and sense of mission. The outcome of engagement may be a shared ownership of an idea, concept, and /or plan for moving forward. Identifying and partnering with appropriate stakeholders is a key ingredient for effective change management. 3. Plan. Plan is the process of determining how best to accomplish a set of objectives and goals as laid out in a strategy. Planning answers the questions of approach (how), timeline (when), and resources needed (who, what). The planning process defines the metrics of success and the critical factors in realizing success. Consideration should be given for resources, skills, timing, dependencies, and risk. 4. Execute. Execute is the process of implementing the plan that has been identified. Execution includes both leadership and performance of the action, task, project, or initiative. Course adjustments may be required when issues and risks arise. 5. Review / Learn. Once a change is implemented, the planning process and execution methods are reviewed to identify what went well and what opportunities exist for improvement. As a learning organization, candid, objective, and collaborative evaluation will enable Georgia Tech to determine better methods of executing change in future endeavors. 6. Enhance. Enhance is the process of incorporating lessons learned, identifying opportunities for improving the process and the resulting change, and strategizing options for implementing those improvements. Outcomes may include large-scale re-developments or minor adjustments and process changes. Page 8 of 15

9 Strategic Business and Operations Framework Checklist by Life Cycle Step The following six checklists contain questions to be considered by decision-makers, action-owners, and project managers during the corresponding steps of the life-cycle process. Each question relates to one or more of the guiding principles. By reflecting on these checklists and their questions during the life-cycle process, the decision-maker, action-owner, or project manager will ensure alignment with the Strategic Business and Operations Framework. Strategize Questions 1. Does the initiative or action meet one or more of the Georgia Tech Strategic Plan goals? 2. Are the vision and priorities clearly articulated? 3. What is the impact to our students, faculty, staff, and the community at-large? 4. What are the risks of the initiative? What are the risks of not doing the initiative? 5. Who are the stakeholders? Who is the owner and/or champion? Who will perform the work? 6. What characteristics, expertise, skills, and experience do we need to ensure success? 7. Have the goals and objectives been established and agreed to by all stakeholders? 8. Will the strategy effectively support the business and operations of the institute? 9. Have metrics for success been clearly identified and means of measurement been determined? 10. Can existing equipment, technology, and facilities be leveraged? Does new physical infrastructure need to be considered? 11. Can efficiencies and value be derived from the strategy? Guiding Principles People Partnership Infrastructure Communication Accountability Page 9 of 15

10 Engage Questions 1. Have the right partners across Georgia Tech and outside of Georgia Tech been engaged in the process? 2. Who are the stakeholders? Who is the owner and/or champion? Who will perform the work? 3. What characteristics, expertise, skills, and experience do we need to ensure success? 4. Have the goals and objectives been established and agreed to by all stakeholders? 5. Have forums for collaboration and coordination been established? 6. Are the vision and priorities clearly articulated? 7. Have roles and responsibilities been defined and articulated? 8. Have academic / research experts in relevant fields been consulted and engaged? Guiding Principles People Partnership Infrastructure Communication Accountability Page 10 of 15

11 Plan Questions 1. Who are the stakeholders? Who is the owner and/or champion? Who will perform the work? 2. What is the impact to our students, faculty, staff, and the community at-large? 3. What are the risks of the initiative? Is there a mitigation strategy in place? 4. What characteristics, expertise, skills, and experience do we need to ensure success? 5. Have the goals and objectives been established and agreed to by all stakeholders? 6. Will the outcomes effectively support the business and operations of the institute? 7. Have metrics for success been clearly identified and means of measurement been determined? 8. Can existing equipment, technology, and facilities be leveraged? Does new physical infrastructure need to be considered? 9. Has a communication strategy been defined? Who is the audience for the communication? What messages do they need to hear and when? 10. Are there adequate gates of reflection and review throughout the project? 11. Has the need for knowledge transfer and training been considered? Has a training strategy been defined? 12. Have academic / research experts in relevant fields been consulted and engaged? Guiding Principles People Partnership Infrastructure Communication Accountability Page 11 of 15

12 Execute Questions 1. What is the impact to our students, faculty, staff, and the community at-large? 2. What are the risks of the initiative? Is there a mitigation strategy in place? 3. Who are the stakeholders? Who is the owner and/or champion? Who will perform the work? 4. What characteristics, expertise, skills, and experience do we need to ensure success? 5. Will the outcomes effectively support the business and operations of the institute? 6. Have metrics for success been clearly identified and means of measurement been determined? 7. Can existing equipment, technology, and facilities be leveraged? Does new physical infrastructure need to be considered? 8. Can efficiencies and value be derived from the strategy? 9. Are the vision and priorities clearly articulated? 10. Has a communication strategy been defined? Who is the audience for the communication? What messages do they need to hear and when? 11. Are there adequate gates of reflection and review throughout the project? 12. Has the need for knowledge transfer and training been considered? Has a training strategy been defined? 13. Have academic / research experts in relevant fields been consulted and engaged? Guiding Principles People Partnership Infrastructure Communication Accountability Page 12 of 15

13 Review / Learn Questions 1. Was a retrospective (review of lessons learned) conducted? What follow-on actions will be taken as a result? 2. What is the impact to our students, faculty, staff, and the community at-large? 3. Have the goals and objectives of the project been met? 4. Will the outcomes effectively support the business and operations of the institute? 5. Have metrics for success been clearly identified and means of measurement been determined? 6. Can efficiencies and value be derived from the outcomes? Guiding Principles People Partnership Infrastructure Communication Accountability Page 13 of 15

14 Enhance Questions 1. Does the initiative or action meet one or more of the Georgia Tech Strategic Plan goals? 2. What is the impact to our students, faculty, staff, and the community at-large? 3. What are the risks of the initiative? What are the risks of not doing the initiative? 4. Who are the stakeholders? Who is the owner and/or champion? Who will perform the work? 5. What characteristics, expertise, skills, and experience do we need to ensure success? 6. Have the goals and objectives been established and agreed to by all stakeholders? 7. Will the outcomes effectively support the business and operations of the institute? 8. Have metrics for success been clearly identified and means of measurement been determined? 9. Can existing equipment, technology, and facilities be leveraged? Does new physical infrastructure need to be considered? 10. Can efficiencies and value be derived from the strategy? 11. Are the vision and priorities clearly articulated? Guiding Principles People Partnership Infrastructure Communication Accountability Page 14 of 15

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