02af6a1Sometimes I think the word “strategy” comes with expectations that are way too high. I don’t think the almighty strategy that can be delivered and perceived as such is the silver bullet answer for a company’s problems like some may think it is. Yes, a strategy is critically important to figure out what your strategic direction should be. I agree totally. I also feel that some corporate executives as well as consultants give the strategy way too much credit and expect the world once the company approves it. I have seen this happen before. As a former consultant, I have probably done the same thing with a strategy that I delivered. Yes… I was overanxious and probably over confident and put too much credit on the strategic plan. I may not have thought about all of the other implications that should be addressed before the final strategy was approved. Hmm.

Translation

The strategy first starts in the minds of the business leaders who are trying to solve complex issues. Some of these issues are not totally controllable. Naturally, a strategy sounds good in theory when tossing the idea around in a conference room. BUT… as good as it looks on paper, sometimes it does not translate well to the practical application aspects and employee workflow. In my opinion, that is where there is a huge gap and breakdowns can occur. Ian Smith has some great points in his LinkedIn article titled, Why A Great Strategy Isn’t Enough. He discusses several symptoms and solutions.

“Finally on a pure practical point. We are all human. To achieve this operational focus, the CEO should take an honest look at the demands on their time.” – Ian Smith

The operational vision and implications are huge as mentioned in this quote. This could be the missing link between a successful strategy and one that fails to perform the way you need it to. If a company doesn’t fully think about the operational vision and its components,

the strategy may not be executed the way it was designed. Additionally, key performance indicators may not hit the mark along the way as well. If your company is in a position of a strategic overhaul, think about not only the complex problem – solution part, but also the everyday workflow areas as well. By thinking more holistically and including these other aspects, the missing links, which can cause the strategy to breakdown, may not be missing any longer. They just may appear and be right under your nose.

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Sources:

Why A Great Strategy Isn’t Enough.https://www.linkedin.com/today/post/article/20140616025046-22982547-why-a-great-strategy-isn-t-enough

Photo Credit: Paul Bica

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