Strategic conversations are important.
Strategic clarity accounts for 31% of the difference between high and low performing organizations. To create strategic clarity, leaders must be able to have effective strategic conversations to decisively move the business and the workforce forward.
The Definition of Strategic Clarity
We define strategic clarity as a strategic plan or decision that is:
How You Know You Need to Improve Your Strategic Conversations
If you find your leadership team having long, redundant, tangential, shallow, narrow or vertical conversations, you probably need to improve your leaders’ ability to hold strategic conversations – especially when the stakes are high.
For example, a recent client ran a two-day strategy session with their global executive team to make some critical decisions regarding target clients, account growth, acquisitions, resource allocation and work quality. While it sounds pretty straightforward for a group of experienced and smart leaders, they were not prepared to hold a complex, fast-moving and collaborative strategic conversation. Instead, they went down rabbit holes, debated myopic details, made erroneous assumptions, crossed personal boundaries and rehashed previous discussions.
Needless to say the CEO was frustrated. He went to great lengths and expense to bring his top team together to address their biggest challenges and did not get the outcome he desired.
One important lesson here is that you must clearly understand and define the problem before you can design a strategy that can effectively address it. Albert Einstein said, “If I were given one hour to save the planet, I would spend 59 minutes defining the problem and one minute resolving it.” Few of us spend that much proportional time understanding the problem first…but our solutions might be far more effective if we did.
Leaders must get better at asking the right questions so that they address the right problems and have the right conversations. To improve the level of your strategic conversations, follow these four guidelines before the “real conversation” begins:
You’d be surprised how often leaders advocate positions without discussing the strategic choices available, or ask for feedback when there is no desire to change direction, or discuss subjects that have little strategic relevance that would be better discussed offline or one-on-one.
Effective strategic conversations create clear strategies. Clear strategies create commitment and focus that drive positive change. Are your leaders capable of having strategic conversations at the right levels?
To learn more about effective and strategic leadership, Download our Leadership Toolkit Now
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What a refreshing change from the half-baked psycho-babble you normally get from “training” organizations. LSA gives you the assistance you need to define and reach your goal, and then they give you a results driven plan – not just a temporary fix. They are great to work with, and even more importantly, they “get it!”
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Fortune 500 Financial Services Company
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Director, Organizational Excellence & Development
I consistently look to LSA Global when I need custom programs put together for my client groups. I can always count on LSA to do a thorough needs analysis and to put together spectacular programs that are well received. Their management development and performance management expertise and professionalism make them one of my top-rated learning and development partners.
HR Program Manager
VNUS Medical has been very pleased with the effective management development programs that LSA Global has delivered for us over the last four years. The programs have been universally facilitated by experienced and best in class instructors. The knowledge gained by our management team has been put into practice very quickly. VNUS is very happy to be working in partnership with LSA because they consistently deliver excellent programs that receive exceptional feedback from our management team.
Cindee Van Vleck
Director Human Resources
We engaged LSA to design and deliver a 6-month custom executive coaching program for a group of our key leaders. The focus of the program was to help a core group of senior leaders to leverage previous investments in management training, to ensure the engagement and retention of key employees, and to push critical strategic initiatives forward. Even with the high expectations of our senior people, LSA has completely exceeded our expectations. I would recommend them to anyone looking to create and implement a custom coaching methodology using proven tools to drive true change.
Senior HR Manager - Staffing, Training, & Development
In my years working with LSA, it seems like I’ve had a personal consultant at my fingertips to help me identify just the right solution to satisfy our needs. The entire LSA team has become a trusted friend of Actel — assuring we provide state-of-the-art learning to meet our complex, high-tech business and people needs.
Each program is preceded by an assessment of the participants. The course is then designed to fit the specific parameters and needs of the group. The highly interactive delivery is provided by recognized experts in their fields. On the spot coaching is provided during the program and each participant receives individual follow-up after the course. Courses can be delivered in-person or virtually. Given the nature of Cisco’s business and the way we operate, these remote workshops are a must for anyone who joins our company. Their work is eye opening. Great content and fantastic delivery.
Frank J. Kuypers
Business Development Manager
We signed up with LSA early on–as their 22nd Member! Since then, our organization’s learning needs have increased and decreased and increased again with the changing times. The beauty of the LSA business model is its flexibility…when we needed to supplement our own internal resources, we used LSA services knowing that we could depend on the outstanding quality of the leadership development and management training programs they provide.
We value our relationship with LSA Global. We came to LSA because we wanted to improve overall behavioral based interviewing capabilities of our managers to increase the probability of both hiring top talent and future leaders. LSA designed a highly customized solution for our business and culture. We are currently rolling out this solution to our leaders. I would highly recommend LSA Global as a top quality resource.
HR Project Manager - Training & Development, PHR
Thank you to LSA Global for their partnership and support in helping us to design and roll-out our valuable management development training program. I personally have partnered with LSA Global at four of my previous companies. It continues to be a delight working with LSA. We look forward to partnering with them at Blackhawk Networks for future training and consulting needs.
VP Human Resources
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