The Challenges Businesses Face
In our experience as executives in the corporate world, we have found that time (and money) has been disproportionately spent on strategy formulation at the expense of effective strategy implementation. Many companies fail or fall short of achieving their full potential not because of “bad strategies”: but because of failure on the part of management to implement good ones.
According to a recent Harvard Business Review study, only 29% of employees sampled, could correctly identify their company’s strategy. So 70% of employees in this study were unknowingly misaligned with their company’s strategic direction.
In practice we see this happening - ask any executive who regularly sits around the boardroom table about company strategy, and he/she usually reaches for an intimidatingly thick, wordy dossier no doubt prepared by a state of the art strategy consultancy. Ask a frontline employee of the same company (be it underground at the rock face, on the shop floor or in the call centre) the same question and you are likely to be met by a blank stare…accompanied by “Huh? What strategy?” if you are lucky.
When employees lack a shared meaning it slows down the entire organization. It’s the ultimate time waster. It may result in confusion and even fear of taking action thereby reducing the effort made towards strategy implementation.