...Are Strategy and Execution Interdependent?
Thinking we can separate strategy from execution is one of the biggest myths of execution. Strategy is about choices - how a company creates and sustains value. A failure to execute often starts with a failure to make those tough choices and even more so failing to communicate them.
Rebecca Homkes, London Business School
The Double Diamond Process Map (British Design Council), highlights this interdependency and the need for joining up strategy and execution. Defining strategy is not a static exercise or a linear process as the diagram indicates with learning and continuous improvement at every stage.
Simon Sinek in his best-selling book 'Start With Why', advocates the importance of understanding the trigger or purpose for any new initiative. He calls it making the invisible visible. Apple are an example of a company who are very clear on why they do what they do and have great execution too.
Are you sure you have a strategy? 'We're pursuing a global strategy, is not actually a strategy. When business leaders call everything a strategy, they create confusion and a lack of business integration. How does knowing that the organisation is pursuing a 'global strategy' help the vast majority of managers motivate their teams or set priorities?
The Strategy Diamond (Hambrick and Fredrickson) is a crisp way to analyse, visualise, summarise and share strategy with your stakeholders by looking at a number of areas including Arenas, Staging, Differentiators, Vehicles and Economic logic.
70% of strategic failures are due to poor execution of leadership.
Even if you have a clear strategy, getting everyone on the team to engage may be a challenge as most strategic initiatives require behavioural change. The #1 Business Bestseller Wall St Journal 'The 4 Disciplines of Execution' highlights the following:
- Focus on what is Wildly Important - 2/3 goals only at one time
- Leverage high impact activities to reach your goals
- Engage the teams in creating their own winning or losing scoreboards
- Accountability sits with everyone in the team
as the four essential Leadership behaviours for Execution Excellence in today's changing world.
Contact us to explore how we can help your business teams with their Strategy & Execution success.