Is an Unclear Corporate Strategy Holding You Back?
Our organizational alignment research found that strategic clarity accounts for 31% of the difference between high and low performing organizations in terms of revenue growth, profitability, customer satisfaction, and employee engagement. If you don’t know where you want to go, how on earth can you get there in a way that makes sense?
Do not let an unclear corporate strategy hold you back.
Why Strategic Clarity Is So Difficult
After corporate strategy retreats, employees continuously report that they find their company’s strategy half as clear as their executive team. It’s astounding how many leaders continue to deploy critical and limited resources without everyone being on the same page. Strategy implementation — especially in complex and rapidly changing environments — takes commitment, clarity, and effort.
For a strategy to be successfully cascaded across a company, each and every employee must truly understand their role, their contribution, and the interdependent roles of those around them in achieving the critical few things that matter most.
9 Symptoms of an Unclear Corporate Strategy
It is also surprising to us that so many organizations miss the strategic ambiguity clues that could warn them that they are off track. Take a quick look at this list of unclear corporate strategy symptoms and see if your business plan for success is at risk:
Beware if less than 75% of the affected population believes that the strategy is clear, believable, and implementable enough to fully commit.
Low performers slow strategic progress and demotivate those around them to reach for higher performance. Beware if low performers remain on the team for too long (typically more than 90 days) without improving.
Beware if strategic targets routinely slip without significant reflection, proportionate consequences, or continuous improvement by the leadership team.
Beware if people do not know how their success is measured, how their contribution fits in, or what they can count on from others around them.
Beware if the majority of people’s time is spent on discussing or executing non-strategic priorities or in areas that are out of their control.
Beware if your target customers and what they value most are not at the heart of what you are doing.
Beware of a strategic indecisiveness, hesitancy, and inconsistency.
Beware if employee morale, discretionary effort, or retention falters.
Beware of strategic ambiguity in terms of individual and team responsibility, cultural accountability, and performance metrics.
The Bottom Line
If any of these traits sound familiar, your organization is most likely suffering from an unclear corporate strategy. The time spent correcting the above problems will serve you well. It is far easier to operate successfully when everyone understands where the company is going and how it is going to get there.
To learn more about avoiding an unclear corporate strategy, download How Strategic Clarity Distinguishes High Performing Leaders – The Elite 6%
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