I had a real ear-bending (that’s a polite English term for arse-chewing) from a CEO a while back when I mentioned he might want to rethink his strategy. He got all red in the face, jumped up and pointed to a bookshelf filled with documents, all neatly bound. They looked like expensive consulting reports.
“See all those?” he shook his finger at the bookshelf. “10 years of strategic plans, competitor analyses and market surveys, prepared by the best and brightest consulting firms money can buy. You don’t want to know how much those cost this firm.” He sat down and sighed. “I’m embarrassed to say that while they are probably excellent plans, we haven’t been able to implement very well. We are still struggling for market share and our new breakthrough products are lost somewhere in ‘never-never-released’ land. So please don’t talk to me about a new strategy!”
There is no strategy without implementation . . .
Over the past three years I have been researching and talking to senior executives about why seemingly good strategies fail to get delivered. I’ve come up with five or six key barriers to effective implementation. And the unfortunate thing is, they all seem to be evident at once, creating a “perfect storm” that pushes most execution efforts onto the jagged reef.
You might be familiar with some of these barriers in your organization:
- Execution is usually an afterthought rather than an integral part of strategy formulation
- Corporate culture is a major cause of poor strategic delivery
- Governance of strategic initiatives is notoriously lacking
- Poor teamwork at the top and “Silo Focus”
- Too many “disconnected” initiatives increase costs and waste time and assets
- Less than 5% of employees have knowledge of or understand the strategic objectives
Want to improve your ability to deliver? Want to implement the good strategic plans you’ve got?
Spend some time rethinking your business processes, build a culture of execution, and realign the focus of your senior team and you can turn the Dead Sea Scrolls into your own Magic Carpet!
There is no strategy without implementation. . . and there is no implementation without leadership!
Tight Lines . . .