Avoid the frustrations of fear-based planning

Once challenges are identified and solutions developed, big goals and new ideas seem much less scary and far more achievable.

It’s estimated that 90% of companies fail to execute their strategic plans successfully. With statistics like this, it’s not surprising that only 2% of leaders surveyed express confidence their organization will achieve 80-100% of the goals they set. Unfortunately, credit unions aren’t immune to these discouraging trends—which is why many leadership teams encounter resistance during strategic planning sessions.

Resistance is usually a sign that it’s time to pause, regroup and gain perspective. In many sessions, bold new ideas are introduced, and the board and leadership teams have a hard time imagining how they’ll even attempt something so audacious. Resistance rarely happens because the leaders don’t care; it surfaces because fear causes them to freeze.

Fear-based paralysis is real. It’s one of the primary reasons strategic plans fail. When leaders give in to the fear of the unknown, they stay in their comfort zones because they don’t have a reference point for what they’re trying to accomplish. As funny as it sounds, organizations refuse to try something new simply because they’ve never done it before.


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