Is Lack of Strategic Clarity Killing Your Performance?
The lack of strategic clarity is a performance killer. Much has been written about strategic clarity and why it is so critical to effective strategy execution. When strategies are unclear or unbelievable, plans never make it across the finish line.
And what good is a strategy if it is not translated into day-to-day actions and priorities that carry the organization forward?
Effective Strategy Execution is Not easy
We know that executing strategy is difficult. A study by IBM found that less than 10% of well formulated strategies are effectively executed. For a strategy to make a true difference, it must be properly executed.
For Strategies to Be Fully Implemented…
To be properly executed, strategic priorities and plans must be understood enough, believable enough, and implementable enough by all key stakeholders.
Strategic Clarity Accounts for 31% of the Difference
Our organizational alignment research found that strategic clarity accounts for 31% of the difference between high and low performing companies. Surprisingly, few firms communicate their strategy so that the rank and file (and even top management) understand it in terms that help them take actions and make decisions in alignment with corporate strategic objectives.
Four Additional Reasons Strategy Execution Fails
The first step toward successful strategy execution is making sure everyone knows the plan and how their job fits into it. Beyond lack of strategic clarity, here are four other reasons we found that strategies are ineffectively executed:
This is often a significant problem for strategy implementation that must count on collaboration across teams, functions and geographies. Conflicts between departments inevitably occur and gum up the works. The lack of coordination causes delays, duplication of effort and a breakdown of accountability.
But a company needs to be able to adapt to changes that threaten success or to grab onto an opportunity that supports their plan for success. When it comes to strategy execution, change agility
Empower your managers to do the right thing without having to report up all the time, slow down execution and undermine their ability to get things done efficiently.
A successful organization needs employees who work well with one another, value learning and innovation, and promote open communication.
The Bottom Line About the Lack of Strategic Clarity
Strategic clarity is the starting point to strategy execution. But it needs to be supplemented by coordination across functions, flexibility, distributed leaders and support of desired behaviors.
To learn more, please download 3 Big Mistakes to Avoid When Cascading Your Corporate Strategy
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