What are Strategic Interviews?
Strategic Interviews are one-to-one discussions that are held with the people who are involved with the strategy development process and/or have knowledge that is important to the process.
The interview takes the form of a structured discussion between the individual and an independent facilitator and are designed to obtain information that is pertinent to the strategic future of the organisation.
The purpose of one-to-one discussions is to uncover information about the individual’s ideas, issues, opinions, goals and aspirations, as well as their fears and concerns regarding the current and future state of the business. As such, the discussions can be a powerful tool in the strategy creation process and are very useful when you want to engage the key people in your organisation in strategy creation and implementation.
The nature of the process means that we obtain the views of individuals who will naturally tend to stay within their own sphere of knowledge and experience. This means that we will obtain a lot of detail about specific areas of the business and not much detail for areas of the business that they are more as familiar with.
Obtaining a pen portrait of each participant can help ensure that you are able to engage with each person in a way that is most likely to obtain good information that is relevant to the strategy creation process. In addition, you should pay attention to where these interviews are held to ensure that the interviewee is comfortable ad that there are no interruptions.
When we hold 0ne-to-one discussions, we capture the information that is gathered as a causal map. This is subsequently entered into our computer system for analysis.
A significant advantage of this method is that it enables us to combine the maps from the discussions from all of the people involved. This then becomes a very powerful tool vs strategy workshops as it creates a strategic model that covers a wide area of the business with a lot of detail while strategy workshops do not give the same depth information.
Another advantage is that people feel that they have been listened to and that their comments have been taken seriously. This is a key component when it comes to implementing the strategy and/or business plan because people will be more engaged in the process and, therefore, more motivated to help make the strategy succeed.
Finally, the people involved very often find this process to be very therapeutic. This is because they are able to express their thoughts, ideas and feelings in a safe space. Due to the success of this process, we decided to offer it as a a stand-alone service – Safe Space Business Support.