Does Your Leadership Team Understand Your Growth Strategy?
I’m often surprised at how few leadership teams are aligned on a growth strategy for their business. It’s common to have wide agreement on the financial objectives for the business over the next few years, and it’s usually assumed that the leadership team is all on the same page regarding a strategy to achieve growth. But I frequently meet executives who have little more than a vague understanding of the guiding strategy and associated priorities that will enable their business to grow. That makes it hard to execute on long-term strategy, beyond day-to-day operational issues.
Here are some questions you might ask yourself to determine how well your team understands your growth strategy:
- Can everyone on your team express your priority objective for the next 2-3 years?
- Can everyone on your team succinctly highlight the primary advantages or differentiators expected to help you win in your chosen markets?
- Can everyone on your team articulate the strategic initiatives meant to build, improve, or buy the capabilities that will help you compete more effectively?
- Can everyone on your team detail his or her functional contribution to the strategic initiatives?
Look for precise and pragmatic answers to these critical questions, not the kind of corporate-speak bullet points that populate PowerPoint templates. As you honestly evaluate your team’s knowledge and understanding of your growth strategy, it will quickly become clear where you need to focus your efforts.
A well-articulated and understood growth strategy can function as the decision making and operating template for management levels of your business. If you’d like to read more about clarifying and communicating your strategy, you may find my article The 3 C’s of Implementing Strategy, useful.
A Slice of Life Balance
Begin 2019 feeling energized instead of exhausted. Joyful as the holidays can be, they are also a time of increased personal, professional, and social commitments, to-do lists, and obligations. It’s easy to feel inundated (even with mostly positive things). During the first week of January, I often hear people say how worn out they are from all the festivities. That’s a tough way to start a new year.
Instead of returning to work tired and depleted, plan ahead to carve out some space for yourself. Treat yourself to a massage or a movie, or simply take time by yourself to chill – anything that doesn’t feel commitment-oriented. Give yourself the gift of downtime and you’ll likely enjoy the holidays more and be ready to start the new year strong.