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The Enemy of the Strategic is the Tyranny of the Urgent

When you think of the word strategic, what comes to mind?  Focused, prioritized, planned, urgent, essential and important are words that come to my mind associated with the concept of strategic.  Everything about the nature and character of God is strategic.  His strategic nature is evidence in His creation, His plans, His sovereignty, His provisions, and His plans for our lives.  Since we are created in His image, we are called to be strategic in all that we do.

For that reason, Christian schools engage in a process to develop strategic plans.  A strategic planning process must answer the following questions; What did God call us to do?  Where are we in response to His call?  Where is He leading us?  How will we get there in a manner that honors Him?  These same questions should be answered by individual Christians who seek to advance the Kingdom of God.

Once these questions are answered, Christian schools, and individuals must work the plan.  The old cliche’ “plan your work, and work your plan” is essential to being a strategic school and a strategic follower of Christ.

The reality that we deal with is that our strategic plans must be pursued in the pressure and presence of urgent matters demanding our attention and action.  The pressure of urgent matters often require so much attention and energy that we can loose focus on what is most strategic.

Strategic leaders must overcome the tyranny of the urgent by being determined to build in their lives and the life of their school ongoing and regular opportunities to focus on what is strategic. The tyranny of the urgent can dominate our time and energy.  Strategic leaders must be intentional and disciplined in scheduling individual and team meetings agendas dedicated to discussing strategic priorities. Being intentional and disciplined might require time in each and every administrative team meeting agenda, and each and every board meeting agenda, a time to focus on strategic priorities by analyzing  progress being made or to determine what is impeding progress.  Strategic leaders must keep the focus on what is strategic while managing what is urgent.  Being strategically intentional and disciplined applies to our individual lives as well.  Strategic institutions are lead by strategic people.

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