Sunday, January 13, 2008


If we don't know where we're going, we will never get there. " True North " expresses business needs that must be achieved and exerts a magnetic pull. True North is a contract, a bond, and not merely a wish list. For Atlas Industries, True North means, above all, stopping the hemorrhage in revenues and achieving a healthy level of profitability. That is not to say other needs will be ignored, only that business needs form a changing hierarchy.
For companies whose condition is less dire, True North can be expressed in a more balanced manner. At Toyota for example, True North usually comprises something for the company and its shareholder, customers, team members, and the community :
  • Company and its shareholders: revenue, return on sales, market share and margins.
  • Customers: in plant and in service quality, warranty costs and quality awards.
  • Team members: safety, ergonomics, good working conditions, training and development opportunities and employment stability.
  • Community: enviromental leadership, involvement in communities and stable employment.

Karras began by giving them an overview of the strategy deployment system.

He explain 6 steps :

  1. Define True North-Atlast Industries' strategic and philosophical purpose.
  2. Develop the plan.
  3. Deploy the plan.
  4. Monitor the plan.
  5. Solve problems.
  6. Improve the system.

Elements 2,3,4 and 5 , he explained correspond to the PDCA cycle, also known as the scientific method.

This article will be continued to " Yearly Strategic Plan Beyond A3 Thinking " .

( Taken from Workbook " Getting the Right Things Done " by Pascal Dennis foreword by Jim Womack )