Misaligned Strategy and Purpose – How Companies Fall Down

One hand is pulling out a block from a Jenga game tower to show how important strategic clarity is in the moves you make

Corporate leaders agree…to win, organizations need to be sure their business strategy aligns with their greater purpose.

This sounds simple but the challenge is in the details. As in the game of Jenga, every move you make counts. As a leader, you need to build a stable base (a meaningful purpose) and have a thoughtful plan (a clear and compelling strategy) to keep making the right moves to build your business, not undermine it.

Here’s what we mean.

A Meaningful Purpose

Think about your organization’s fundamental purpose. What are you truly trying to achieve as a business? Your purpose is not just about increasing revenue. That’s what every business needs to do stay alive. The purpose of your business should be specific to what you do and why you exist. Its view is long-term and unchanging. The best purpose statements inspire your employees to do good work and point toward the impact on the lives of those you serve.

For example, Amazon, the largest online retailer in the world, ruthlessly follows their mission to “strive to offer customers the lowest possible prices, the best available selection, and the utmost convenience.”  As an Amazon Prime customer I can attest that Amazon follows through on this purpose.  Amazon makes it clear who their customers are and how they intend to improve their customers’ lives. The purpose is simple, focused and motivational.  At LSA Global, our mission is to “create a competitive advantage through people.”

Business Strategy

Strategic clarity, the first step in getting aligned, accounts for 31% of the difference between high and low performing organizations.  Done right, your company’s strategy should ruthlessly guide the choices you make about where you invest, win and fulfill your organization’s purpose. The key is to ensure that your company is 100% aligned behind your purpose in the way it thinks and behaves.

It should not be surprising that aligned companies and teams consistently achieve higher performance, but our recent organizational alignment research results blew us away. Based upon 410 companies across eight industries, highly aligned companies grow 58% faster and are 72% more profitable while outperforming unaligned companies at these rates:

  • Customer Retention 2.23-to-1
  • Customer Satisfaction 3.2-to-1
  • Leadership Effectiveness 8.71-to-1
  • Employee Engagement 16.8-to-1

As a leader, you need to make sure your strategy is understood, believable and implementable enough for your unique situation and purpose.

The Bottom Line

Syncing your strategy with your purpose is a smart first step to getting aligned and outperforming your competition.

To learn more, download How to Ensure Your Strategy is Clear Enough to Act

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Vice President of Human Resources

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Vice President Human Resources

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Director of Global Recruiting

AKQA

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HR Director

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Director of Human Resources

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Fortune 500 Financial Services Company
Director of Infrastructure & Technology

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Learning & Development

ebay

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HR Project Manager - Training & Development, PHR

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Director, Team Development

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Senior Manager, HR Destiny Sales Region

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Anita Luckinbill
Director, Human Resources

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