What Travel Taught Me About Strategic Planning

Travelled to a city or place that has more ‘must see venues’ than times allows you to visit?  Then you have experienced strategic planning.  Want to visit the leading cultural sites in your desired location then research the top rated museums.  Desire a taste of the nation, work the restaurant guides and food blogs.  A thrill seeking bent will keep one on the scent of wild rides and adrenaline drops.  Anytime there is more opportunity than our bandwidth can absorb, we plan.  We select the ‘must visit’ locals and start reversen engineering our schedule to accomodate our choices.  We chart our days, perhaps leaving gaps for serendipity and getting lost but with focus on the central goal of each day.

Strategic planning is the opportunity to select which trips you wish to take over a fixed time.  Each time you get closer to departing on an upcoming adventure you assemble the details, such as airline tickets, hotel reservations, museum passes.  This is equivalent to the annual operating plan of an organization.  You engage experts like travel agent, guide, or the chat forums for advise, recommendations, and reassurances.

We establish travel strategy screens to help assess opportunities that present themselves in real-time.  If you are a lover of trains and the Glacier Express happens to run while you are in Switzerland, I imagine you might adjust your trip around its itinerary.

The big question is where do you want to go in the next ten or twenty years?  Which continents, countries, cities, galaxies?  Could select one or two that rise to the top of your priority list?  Are there three steps you could take today to start making a trip a reality?  What do you value most when you travel and would be willing to adjust your plans to accomodate?

The answers to the above questions is the basis of all strategic, operational, and strategy screen planning.  We do it all the time.  It does not need to be complicated and labored.  If it is not worth the rewards of exploration, why start?

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