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Chief Executives:  Strategic Planning and CEO Roundtables

Make no little plans.  They have not the spirit to stir men's minds. - Daniel Burnham

Chief executives need to create the conditions for collaboration and for succession.  Providing a strategic plan not only provides direction, it is in effect a diagram for collaboration, of how each department--each perspective--is critical to forward-looking decisions. 

Chief executives are expected to know everything. 
The Center also facilitates CEO Roundtable Intensives, so chief executives can explore deep issues in confidence with peers (see below). 

Our strategic planning facilitation uses four of the Center’s tools:  5-Year Look, Competitor Grid, Trends Outline and the Goal Tree.  It follows Question-Based Planning, which begins with "question discovery," a structured 2-hour session in which planners get all their questions on the table and then prioritize them. 

Question-Based Planning only takes five 2-hour meetings over two months, with no retreats or fat binders (here is the short book).  It answers the three core questions of leadership:

  • Why are we doing this?

  • Where are we going?

  • How are we going to get there?

"I learned about Question-Based Planning as a director of our hospital, where it's been a repeat success; the one-page 'goal tree' really got my attention. At Culver's, it helped our management team get and stay clear on the key issues. The plan helped us make real progress in every discipline." - Phil Keiser, CEO, Culver Franchising System, Inc.

One CEO vented: I just want everyone headed in the same direction—I don’t really care which one! 

Without a solid plan, projects wander and time and resources get wasted. Plans should instead generate focus, improve collaboration and produce consistent results

The Goal Tree provides added benefits:

  • Shows direction and priorities at a glance

  • Shows everyone how they fit together

  • Traces everyone’s career path

  • Clarifies lines of delegation

  • Keeps directors focused

  • Makes accountability crystal clear

Click here for a 1-page summary of Question-Based Planning.  Contact us for more information.


We run semi-annual intensives for chief executives.  These sessions are unique:  a peer delivers a 15-minute setup for a facilitated discussion (at tables of five) of 3 provocative questions.  Topics have included:

•  Future Perfect:  How to Predict the Future Perfectly
•  Backfire:  How Can Success Get in the Way of Success
•  The Nine Stories Leaders Have to Tell
•  Power Up:  Getting Buy-In From Everyone

Consider joining one of our CEO Roundtable Intensives.  See Events.

We help people achieve great things together.


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