~ 5 MIN READ
2018 Strategy and Performance Management Summit: A Recap
Last week marked ClearPoint’s fourth annual Strategy and Performance Management Summit, held in Fort Lauderdale, where we learned from our clients in a variety of industries about experiences and lessons learned when faced with strategy
Last week marked ClearPoint’s fourth annual Strategy and Performance Management Summit, held in Fort Lauderdale, where we learned from our clients in a variety of industries about experiences and lessons learned when faced with strategy and reporting challenges.
This year, we decided to switch it up by kicking off the summit with an afternoon of advanced training for ClearPoint power-users, where we held sessions on organization wide data management, effective data reporting, and increasing reporting efficiency to tie it all together. We ended the evening in true ClearPoint fashion, with a great happy hour that allowed attendees to network, share best practices in performance management, and discuss the various ways in which they’ve leveraged ClearPoint to enhance overall strategy execution at their respective organizations. Not to mention, we got to enjoy some delicious flatbreads to compliment the conversation!
We began bright and early with a warm welcome from Lee Feldman, City Manager of Fort Lauderdale and former ICMA President, before we dove into a day packed full of client presentations and speed networking. To start, we heard from Jackson Wood, Director of Strategy and Business Management at Cancer Care Ontario, who shared with us his own personal performance management journey at the organization.
Jackson talked to us about storytelling, and the importance of connecting the dots and providing context when it comes to strategy. He explained that providing a spreadsheet full of data isn’t enough to allow staff and stakeholders to understand and get behind high level goals. Instead, Jackson emphasized that you have to create a compelling narrative in order to be successful. This concept of storytelling as it relates to strategy acted as a common theme throughout several of the presentations during the summit, as client after client emphasized how ClearPoint has played a role in creating that narrative by moving away from complicated data-filled spreadsheets, to more streamlined high-level reports.
Following Cancer Care Ontario, we heard from Cobb EMC, Origin Bank, the City of Germantown, TN, APR Supply, the City of Durham, NC, and the City of West Palm Beach, FL, to close it all out. These presentations covered everything from the actual creation and execution of a strategic plan, to bringing data to life, to aligning an entire organization with a strategic vision. We heard from strategy experts at each of these organizations about the initial challenges they faced regarding strategy and performance management, the role they each played in overcoming these challenges, and what their plans are for moving forward to continue their path to strategic success.
During the day we also held two “speed networking” sessions where attendees from different industries got together to learn from one another about each other’s strategy and performance management journeys. When asked what people took away from these conversations, we heard the following pieces of advice:
- Start small: when building and managing a strategic plan, it’s easy to become overwhelmed by the magnitude of it all. Taking baby steps is okay – in fact, it’s encouraged. Tackle it in pieces, and make sure you’ve given each area the appropriate attention before moving on to the next. Make sure your measures are well defined, or set the appropriate targets, or focus on the formatting of your reports. No matter what stage you’re at in the process, take it one step at a time, and be as thorough as possible.
- Hit the reset button when things get too complicated: If things feel out of control, take a step back. For example, if the execution of your strategic plan isn’t going as planned, that doesn’t mean you need to throw your entire strategic framework down the drain. Instead, you may need to look at a different way of tracking and managing. If the spreadsheet you built originally has turned into an outdated and complicated “monster” of sorts, maybe it’s time to consider software for help.
- Transparency is important: You don’t have to work in the public sector for transparency to be important, and transparency doesn’t just matter to your customers – it matters for your employees too. Share your strategic plan with employees and stakeholders to help create buy in, and if necessary, share your plan and your progress with the public. If you work at a municipality, and you want to be better about sharing your progress with citizens, an open data portal or Community Dashboard might work for you.
Finally, we wrapped it all up with another great happy hour to celebrate the day, enjoyed some delicious appetizers, and continued to learn from our clients about how they are each leveraging ClearPoint in different ways based on their organization’s specific needs.
We kicked off the last day of the summit with a Q&A session with Pacific Gas and Electric, in which we learned about their performance management journey from start to finish. Stephanie Martinago, a Senior Analyst on the performance management team, shared with us the process behind data collection and preparation for the organization’s Business Plan Review, the challenges they faced when trying to implement changes, and where they are now. Hint: with a lot of blood, sweat, and tears, they’ve got it down to a tee and are executing their strategy much more effectively than a few years ago.
What have they learned in the process? Standardization and consistency play a key role in the success of their reporting and the Business Plan Review meeting itself, employing best practices have been critical to developing quality metrics, and employing ClearPoint as their strategy and performance management software has helped to streamline their reporting process by tracking and managing everything in one centralized location.
Later in the day we heard from the City of Fort Collins, CO, the City of Olathe, KS, and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. They discussed best practices for measuring strategy, citizen data collection and automation, and streamlining performance management to create an environment of continuous improvement and success. To wrap it all up, Ted Jackson, Managing Partner at ClearPoint, unveiled some of ClearPoint’s newest upcoming features based on the requests we’ve received from clients. We’ll be sharing this news with all of you as well very soon.
On top of everything we learned, we also got to enjoy blue skies and 80-degree weather, a beautiful setting on the water at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts, and good company to discuss all things strategy and performance. All in all, we can confidently say that the 2018 Strategy and Performance Management Summit was a huge success, made possible by all the people who use ClearPoint. Jackson Wood from Cancer Care Ontario said it best: "If you put data in front of people you get conversations about data, if you put insights in front of people you get conversations about the future." We at ClearPoint strive to help put these insights in front of our clients every day, and we were happy to hear that they’ve been seeing the desired results.
If you’re interested in attending the summit in 2019, email our team at [email protected] and we’ll be sure to add you to our contact list to keep you in the loop on details for next year. We hope to see you there!
Want to see the client presentations themselves? Access them here: