A lack of organization alignment is an underlying cause of many problems and opportunities in organizations. While most departments are working on some level of improvement, rarely are they aligned with one another. I would like to offer a simple but very effective method for creating alignment across organizations, as well as within an organization. The acronym for this method is GMOST (Goals, Metrics, Opportunities, Strategies, Tactics). GMOST is designed to create a structured planning template for an Enterprise, Business System, or Department. By creating GMOST plans at all levels, an organization creates an environment of accountability, alignment and performance management.
The GMOST Method for organization alignment.
G - Established Goals.
M - Metrics used to evaluate performance towards those goals.
O - Opportunities or problems that must be fixed to attain a goal.
S - Planned Strategies that will resolve problems or fix opportunities.
T - Specific Tactics to be employed to implement the strategies.
A brief description of each element follows.
GOALS: What are your ultimate aims and what are your performance targets for the next 12-18 months?
A Goal is a broad, long-term aim that, if achieved, will deliver desired results. It also includes a specific performance target that quantities progress towards the goal over a specified period of time.
Example: Reduce Product Development cycle time (the Goal) by 50% (the target) by the end of third quarter.
METRICS: How will you monitor progress towards your goals?
A Metric is a unit of measure used to evaluate performance towards a goal. It communicates the actual level of performance, which will be compared to the target goal performance above.
Example: Product Development cycle time will be measured from Ideation start to Product launch.
OPPORTUNITY: What must be fixed or improved to attain your target goals?
An Opportunity is a problem that is preventing you from achieving your goal. It is something that must be changed or a specific performance that must be improved.
Examples: 1) Missing change control process, 2) Unclear customer requirements, 3) Ineffective use of software tools.
STRATEGIES: What will you do differently to accomplish your goals?
A Strategy is a planned change or improvement designed to fix a problem or resolve an opportunity preventing you from achieving your goal. A Strategy becomes a project to implement changes or improve performance levels to achieve your goals.
Example: Develop clear specifications for new products.
TACTICS: How will you implement the strategies?
Tactics are specific actions to be taken to implement a strategy.
Examples: 1) Deploy new business process design for verification. 2) Define input requirements for new vendors. 3) Assign and align roles and responsibilities.
By creating GMOST plans across an organization, leadership can assure organization alignment amongst each level and department with the overall organization vision. Leadership should begin with a top level GMOST and then cascade GMOSTs progressively down the hierarchical stricture. Each GMOST level should be aligned and in total balance with those above it and those alongside it as well.
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