Become a confident strategist by mastering the fundamentals

Get lifetime course access to master the strategy operating process and be rewarded for your strategic thinking.

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The Ultimate Course For Strategy Misfits

If you are...

A blindfolded strategy misfit who has never been taught the fundamentals of strategy

Looking to gain confidence in your process and role

Transitioning from another discipline to strategy and need some practical information

In a part of strategy where you’re dealing with the creative industry...

Then SFS is definitely what you need.

Who is Julian Cole?

Julian Cole is a strategy consultant to global brands including Apple, Facebook, Disney, Snap and Uber. Previously he's held the role of Head of Comms Planning at BBDO and BBH in New York.

He's helped create award-winning work for PlayStation, Bacardi, Pepsi, Google, and Coca-Cola.

With a void of practical strategy education, in 2019 Julian started the Strategy Finishing School (prev. Planning Dirty Academy) he has taken his world class experience and taught it to over 2,000 strategists.



Strategy Finishing School

The Strategy Finishing School is an online platform with over 2000+ members from leading brands and agencies including Google, Netflix, New York Times, Facebook, DDB, Droga5, and W+K.

It is designed for people who have never been formally taught strategy but find themselves in a role where strategy is in their title.

With over 80+ lessons that are updated monthly and a thriving online community, the School is perfect for strategists who are looking to fast track their career.

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2,000+ Strategists Have Filled
Their Knowledge Gap


Everything you need and more to build
your strategy confidence

12 key modules covering ALL the strategy essentials

Self-paced videos - Learn whenever, wherever

Private community - Connect with other members and Julian himself

Unlimited resources including downloadable decks and templates


Master the skills of strategy needed at the 3 levels of your career

The modules help you at the three levels (Strategist, Strategy Director and Head Of Strategy).

Chapter 1 - Strategy Fundamentals (Strategist)

Chapters 2-8 - Research, Insights, Briefing, Brand Strategy, Comms Planning, Advertising Effectiveness, Business Strategy (Strategy Director)

Chapters 9-11 - Diplomacy, Management, Selling Strategy (Head Of Strategy)

Learn whenever, wherever. Access all the content immediately.

You get access to all the content in the School right away.

No gated access or waiting for school to start.

The course was designed for busy strategists, meaning if you need to learn something right away you will have a video and template ready for you.

Join a private community of world class strategists

Become a part of our private Facebook community, which consists of the other members of the Strategy Finishing School; a vibrant, trusted, and talented network of strategists that you can easily bounce ideas off with.

Save your time with templates you can copy/paste

You will have access to the Strategy Finishing School Library, which is a Google folder containing presentations and templates that have saved Julian and other strategists hours of presentation creation time.

You can copy and paste templates including strategy set up decks, content strategy, scoping strategy, comms planning, strategy department vision, to over 100+ frameworks that are designed for you to swipe and save.

A partner for your whole strategy career

All Strategy Finishing School members have lifetime access to the content, allowing you to always refer to the content throughout your career.

It was designed to help you at each stage with different content bespoke to that role.

The content in the school is also getting updated every year based on the new demands of the members of the Strategy Finishing School.

You’ll get industry recognized certification

When you complete the first chapter of the Strategy Fundamentals, you will get the Strategy Finishing School certification.

The certification is recognized by Chief Strategy Officers at leading companies around the world and has led to a number of members being hired into leading strategy roles.

What’s in it for you?

12 Modules

These modules address the 3 stages of a strategist's career (strategist, strategy director and head of strategy).
Chapter 1 - Strategy Fundamentals covers everything you need to know to be a strategist, followed by Chapters 2-8 which will cover all the broad skills you'll need as a Strategy Director, and finally Chapters 9-11 will tackle the essentials of being a Head of Strategy.

Consistent lesson updates

We add new lessons every month, so there's always something new to look forward to and learn!

Presentation Templates

Gain access to dozens of presentation templates - from company reports, content strategy, scoping strategy, to over 100+ frameworks that are designed to boost your role credibility.

Lifetime Access

All SFS academy students have lifetime access to every module, allowing them to return to any lesson at any time, anywhere.

Private Facebook Community

Become a part of our private Facebook community, which consists of the other members of the Academy; a vibrant, trusted, and talented network of strategists that you can easily bounce ideas off with.

Here’s what other strategists like you have gained after this course:

Unrivaled strategic ability confidence

Strategy work is seen as a centerpiece, not an afterthought

Extensive knowledge of strategy skills (comms planning, business strategy, and management) that leaves a massive impact on the company

A bigger, stronger network of trusted strategists that you can bounce ideas off and collaborate with

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, you do!
Not only do you get access to the 80+ lessons.
You get access to all the one-off templates and decks as well.

If you are a strategist who is currently in the advertising industry (creative/in-house/media/pr/digital/social/design/branding) and looking for a roadmap on how to get to strategy leadership then the academy is for you..

I have broken the lessons into three areas: beginner (Junior/Senior Strategist), intermediate (Strategy Directors), and advanced (Heads of Strategy)

The bullseye is for strategists who have been in their career for 5+ years and have moved into strategy from a different discipline (account/creative/producing) and are looking to quickly skill up on the fundamentals and take a leadership role.

The average company spends $1286 USD per employee on training (1). In marketing, the rule of thumb is that you spend 1-5% of your annual salary on training. If you are not using this opportunity, you are limiting your potential.

Companies greatly benefit from training. It promotes employee growth, increases employee satisfaction, and serves as a tax deduction for the business.

We have put together a template on how to ask your boss to pay for the Academy.

You will have lifetime access to the Academy.
There is a new lesson in the Academy every 2 weeks. So you will be constantly learning.

The course comes with a monthly Q&A session.

However, there are three others ways that you will have access to Julian Cole;

1) Julian checks the private Facebook Group daily and answers all questions. So if you have a question this is the best place to ask as you also get the benefit of all the other strategy minds in the group.

2) On the website, Julian will check all the comments and give feedback on exercises so feel free to ask questions there.

3) You will be able to email Julian directly.

You access the course through this website academy.planningdirty.com.

You will also have access to the special Planning Dirty Academy Drive which has all the presentations and frameworks.

The Academy is a one time payment of $1997 USD. You can also pay in 12 monthly installments of $184. This will give you access to the Academy for life.

It is recommended that everyone starts with the Strategy Fundamentals module to get up to speed.

Then it is up to you to go into detail on the different topics.

We will also be going through different modules every month with Q&As on the Facebook Page.

We have a number of companies who do this as a group. If you are interested in a office plan, get in touch – julian@planningdirty.com

If you are interested in an office plan, get in touch - julian@strategyfinishingschool.com


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