Book review

Businessplan on 1 A4: Planning and effectively with OGSM

We first learned about OGSM through the book Businessplan on 1 A4 by Mark van Eck and Ellen van Zanten. After reading it, we immediately got to work to integrate this systematic approach to change management with our software.

OGSM is an approach that creates coherence between the goal or vision of your organisation (the Objective) and the strategies you deploy to achieve it, the indicators you measure to keep track of progress, and a concrete plan of action. The great advantage of OGSM is that its format forces you to capture your business plan or change programme in a single comprehensive page. To do that, you'll have to make clear choices and be precise with your formulations. You'll have to endure some "toothaches", as Van Eck puts it strikingly. 

OGSM start with an Objective: the vision of your organisation. The Objective should capture all the elements that are essential to the full satisfaction of your organisation. Subsequently, you'll translate the Objective into SMART Goals. Strategies, then, are the specific approaches and choices your organisation selects in order to achieve the Goals, and ultimately the Objective. These strategies are then in turn translated to quantitative Measures - both KPIs and a concrete Action Plan with steps to execute your Strategies. 

An important element of the OGSM method is the "goal-by-doing" framework: in one sentence, you'll describe both the desired result as well as the steps you plan to take to get there. This format is used for the Objective, the Strategies and the Action Plan and ensures that qualitative formulations don't become vague or multi-interpetable. 

A great advantage of OGSM is the ability to 'cascade' your main OGSM in horizontal and vertical directions, i.e. aplly the format to individual departments or strategies. This way, your OGSM will not remain an abstract high-level perspective, but you can also use it as a lens to zoom in down to the level of individual workers. Bizaline software was always built to connect goals, projects and tasks; but by structuring these is an OGSM, it will be clear for every employee how their daily work contributes to every aspect of the organisation's mission.

OGSM: from overview to a dynamic method

Using the Bizaline software, you can digitalise your OGSM to create a dynamic plan. Doing so will allow you to update your OGSM at any time, in order to more effectively adapt to changing market conditions.

Interested in learning more about dynamic OGSMs and how to create one for your organisation? Don’t hestitate to contact us at and we’ll be happy to show you how it works.


Antoinette Wieman

Managing Partner


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