Do you ever secretly wonder why you really need a strategy? The business gurus all say you should have one. But come on, you know what you want to accomplish, just jump in and get it done! Why go through the effort to gather the team, hash through it all, get something written down, then keep revisiting it in meeting after meeting all year?
You may get a measure of success by just throwing the team in the lake and saying, “swim that way!”. They’re likely to move in the general direction you pointed. But it takes more if you want the level of success that comes from everyone rowing together at the same time toward the same objectives.
I was probably a teenager the first time someone told me that the railroad companies’ biggest failure was that they thought they were in the railroad business. If they had realized they were in the transportation business they would have been the first to build airplanes and would own the world of transportation today. (Government protection against monopolies aside…)
The Power of Disruption
I’ve had numerous conversations lately with leaders trying to figure out their strategy for moving their organization through and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic. They roughly fall into two camps: Those trying to protect and rebuild what was, and those who are excited about the new freedom they have to innovate outside the old box.Continue reading Mission vs. Method
You’ve done it. You’re holding it in your hands. The perfect strategic plan. Months of effort by leaders from across the organization. You can almost taste the success it promises. Well, almost…
Until you remember that’s how you felt holding last year’s plan. The one you only accomplished 30% of.
Still, there’s a sense of satisfaction that you met the goal of creating a plan. The planning season is over, time to move on to other battles. You distribute the plan and everyone puts it on the shelf next to last year’s plan.
In a 1957 speech, President Dwight D. Eisenhower quoted a statement he had heard in the Army, ”Plans are worthless, but planning is everything”. Eisenhower understood that the thought processes and collaboration involved in planning are more valuable than the document.
Some organizations are good at creating and executing strategic plans. Others don’t see the value in planning, or at least not enough to give it the time it takes. In between you have those who faithfully create their plans and set them on a shelf to collect dust until next year’s planning cycle. Continue reading A Plan is Nothing…