Published on 05/09/2017
Excited about having created a strategy, many business leaders find themselves wondering why their companies continue to under-perform. Many companies fail at strategy execution, creating a wide gap between strategy and results.
This chasm may lead you to wonder: why do some companies struggle or fail while others thrive? Are there some common barriers that can stop businesses dead in their tracks and if so, what are they?
The 3 Fundamental Barriers to Strategy Execution Success
As it turns out, there are 3 fundamental barriers to sustainable business success:
- Leadership: inability to staff enough leaders who have the capabilities to delegate and predict
- Scalable Infrastructure: lack of systems and structures to handle the increased complexity
- Marketing: failure to anticipate and address market changes and/or inability to attract enough of the right customers
One or more of these barriers trip up most leaders and prevent them from building a sustainably growing business. If these are the barriers, is there an antidote that can ensure sustainable and profitable growth?
It all starts with balancing results and relationships. Focusing too much on results at the expense of relationships or being purely concerned about relationships and harmony at the expense of results is non-sustainable. Maintained in balance, good results improve relationships and better relationships drive better results.
Balancing results and relationships when coupled, with the Four Decisions (People, Strategy, Execution, and Cash) as described in Verne Harnish’s award winning book Scaling Up provide a proven framework and methodology to support leaders in scaling up their companies. When followed closely, this methodology has resulted in transformative impact on the success of mid market companies.
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The 3 Key Disciplines of Strategy Execution
At the highest level, strategy execution involves three key disciplines:
Priorities to create and maintain focus and alignment
- Keep your annual priorities at 3-5 otherwise you probably have too many
- Pick a single priority for each quarter that supports the annual priorities
- Ensure everyone in the company knows the priorities and how what they do contribute
Metrics to timely track results against targets
- Pick Numerical Targets for the quarter, year and 3 years that will have the biggest contribution on your business success journey
- Identify your KPIs (Key Performance Indicators). Measure and report on your actual results vs. your KPIs on a frequent and transparent basis. Remember the “If you measure it, it will improve; if you measure it and report on it, it will improve faster” phenomena.
Meeting rhythms to make real time course correction and better and faster decisions
- Institute a company wide meeting rhythms that includes daily huddles, weekly staff meetings, weekly one-on-one meetings, monthly planning sessions, monthly all-hands-meetings and quarterly strategic plan reviews
- The daily huddle, when done properly, will turbo charge employee focus, engagement, motivation, collaboration and productivity.
By following this methodology, you will in fact begin to cerate a quantum leap improvement in productivity, profitability and growth while at the same time ensuring you are able to balance both relationships and results so critically important for long-term sustainability.
Guest post by Bahaa Moukadam, Founder & Head Coach, SeeMetrics Partners.
Like this post? You’ll love Bahaa’s strategy execution webinar! Watch the recording of our latest webinar with him today.
About Bahaa Moukadam
Mr. Moukadam’s current focus is to apply his passion for success to support executives expand their capacity to lead, grow, and profit, while having more time and less anxiety. He is a Certified Gazelles International Coach and contributor to the best-selling book Scaling Up.