Is a lack of strategic planning causing your group benefits costs to balloon? Better question: if it were, would you know? Strategic planning plays an important role in determining how much a business pays for its group benefits plans. But not every business has a strategic approach; as a result, they end up paying more than they have to. There’s no alarm system for that: if you’re not aware of what you’re missing, it’s easy to toil on, assuming that the costs you bear are simply a fact of life. Fortunately, that’s not always the case.

Strategic planning makes a measurable difference

Markets are constantly changing. Even volatility itself is inconstant. The environment in which a company does business is characterized by flux, according to the Houston Chronicle: “New competitors move into the market. Existing competitors leave the market. Population shifts result in increases or decreases in population.”

Where group benefits are concerned, your costs can vary widely depending on your plan design, on whether you choose to self-insure or not, on how effectively you negotiate the cost of medical services, and so on.

A strategic plan must take all of this in stride, adapting your efforts to a constantly-changing landscape, so you can capitalize on and respond to circumstances as they arise.

A lack of strategic planning can be very costly

  • Putting you in jeopardy with legal compliance
  • Leading to poor employee performance
  • Marring your company’s reputation
  • Making you less desirable to the candidates you seek
  • Diminishing employee retention; increasing turnover
  • Decreasing the value of your business
  • Never achieving your business potential

This problem must be addressed at the root, with the underlying attitudes that lead to them.

Three attitudes that sabotage strategic planning

  • If it’s not broken, why fix it?
  • We’ve done it this way for years, so we’re fine
  • I don’t need info; I’m doing it my way

These attitudes are the enemies of strategic thinking. They’re strategic planning killers. For a business to reach the success it has the potential to obtain, it must leave these approaches behind.

“There are known knowns; there are things we know we know,” said Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. “We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say we know there are some things we do not know. But there are also unknown unknowns – the ones we don’t know we don’t know.”

This category – what you don’t know you don’t know – tends to be the difficult one, Rumsfeld said. That’s true of strategic planning. Yet ignorance is not a winning defense. Strategic planning is essential not only for group benefits cost control, but for the growth of your business as a whole.

What if you could save 10 to 15% on health care each year just by partnering with a firm that knows those unknowns? What would that mean for your bottom line? If you’re ready to put your strategic planning hat on, we’re ready to help. Contact us or download our latest report today.

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