Social Media and Strategy Execution


Like nearly everyone else on the planet with a smart phone or internet connection, I have a social media account and use twitter (not daily, but occasionally).  I use WordPress to post my blogs, Twitter to send out short messages related to my consulting work, LinkedIn (just because it was recommended so people could find me and visa-versa), texting to reach my daughter or wife when they are out and about, and a rarely used Facebook page (I am rather shy and don’t want the world to know what I do or think every minute of the day or night).  Sometimes I find my social media connections useful and even inspiring (at least the blogs I subscribe to), but it’s not a big part of my life. I definitely qualify as the older generation on that one!

Because I still work (consulting and writing thriller novels) and have for the past 40 years, I consider discipline and focus to be critical in accomplishing goals and objectives (like writing a business book or novel), designing a software package for business, or developing a strategy or leadership workshop for a client.  With all the other important ingredients in life (family, health, household chores, reading, music and of course flyfishing), I need to be disciplined and guard my time closely so I can accomplish all the things I set out to do.

Texting_thumb 2Yet I am amazed as I walk the streets of any town or city, ride the subway or go to meetings or the movies – everyone is thumb-texting on smartphones.  The majority are texting friends or searching and posting on Facebook.  And it’s not just the younger generation.  It’s everyone.

Here’s a shocking statistic I recently came across: Social networking eats up 3+ hours perpeople20texting day for the average user!  And I will bet that this number will grow larger as more and more people get seduced by the instant gratification of social networking. It is definitely addictive!

“Always On” versus “Always On Purpose”!

In a blog not too long ago I talked about Duke the Cat, who displays great focus and discipline, characteristics I consider critical for effective strategy execution. But the fact is, most strategies fail, not due to poor strategy, but mostly due to poor execution. And one of the most prevalent barriers to effective strategy execution is lack of focus on those few critical strategic initiatives, and lack of management discipline.

Most companies have not only too many initiatives, but too many that are disconnected from the overall strategic objectives.  These disconnected initiatives waste time, human energy, money and other important business resources.  It is estimated that about 30% of all active initiatives and projects inside most companies are disconnected from the overall business and strategic objectives.

An addiction to social media wastes time and human energy that could be better spent fulfilling life goals, finishing important projects, building and repairing human relationships.

What would you do with an extra 3 hours a day?  If you don’t have exciting goals or dreams you care about, then keep texting and face booking.

Things may come to those who wait, but only the things left by those who hustle.  ~Abraham Lincoln

Things may come to those who text and Facebook all day, but only the things left by those who have focus and discipline!

Tight Lines . . .

John R Childress

About johnrchildress

John Childress is a pioneer in the field of strategy execution, culture change, executive leadership and organization effectiveness, author of several books and numerous articles on leadership, an effective public speaker and workshop facilitator for Boards and senior executive teams. In 1978 John co-founded The Senn-Delaney Leadership Consulting Group, the first international consulting firm to focus exclusively on culture change, leadership development and senior team alignment. Between 1978 and 2000 he served as its President and CEO and guided the international expansion of the company. His work with senior leadership teams has included companies in crisis (GPU Nuclear – owner of the Three Mile Island Nuclear Plants following the accident), deregulated industries (natural gas pipelines, telecommunications and the breakup of The Bell Telephone Companies), mergers and acquisitions and classic business turnaround scenarios with global organizations from the Fortune 500 and FTSE 250 ranks. He has designed and conducted consulting engagements in the US, UK, Europe, Middle East, Africa, China and Asia. Currently John is an independent advisor to CEO’s, Boards, management teams and organisations on strategy execution, corporate culture, leadership team effectiveness, business performance and executive development. John was born in the Cascade Mountains of Oregon and eventually moved to Carmel Highlands, California during most of his business career. John is a Phi Beta Kappa scholar with a BA degree (Magna cum Laude) from the University of California, a Masters Degree from Harvard University and was a PhD candidate at the University of Hawaii before deciding on a career as a business entrepreneur in the mid-70s. In 1968-69 he attended the American University of Beirut and it was there that his interest in cultures, leadership and group dynamics began to take shape. John Childress resides in London and the south of France with his family and is an avid flyfisherman, with recent trips to Alaska, the Amazon River, Tierra del Fuego, and Kamchatka in the far east of Russia. He is a trustee for Young Virtuosi, a foundation to support talented young musicians. You can reach John at or
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3 Responses to Social Media and Strategy Execution

  1. Great point although I suspect that many teenagers would claim that spending time on social media helps them in “building and repairing human relationships” and that is their most important goal.


  2. Raunak says:

    Love the adaptation of Lincoln’s words. Social Media reminds me of a discourse I heard this morning.A “wise”man was asked whathe thought of social media and its negative impact. He replied that no human invention is evil…it is only when we enslave ourselves to it that it becomes bad.

    While social media has facilitated several great initiatives, its also become a master of many weak human minds.


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