What if, after having communicated your TOP 5 strategic priorities multiple times, only 55% of your middle managers were able to name even one? According to a recent HARVARD BUSINESS REVIEW study (HBR 58, March 2015),this is a reality for many companies. This also demonstrates that strategic initiatives tend to fail at the execution level. Typical conditions causing companies to struggle in this area include unclear responsibilities, insufficient strategy communication and inadequate transformation concepts. Further obstacles consist of the employees’ insufficient understanding of the strategy or success factors and the implementation of performance measures which are not aligned with the strategy.
Furthermore, the lack of accountability for the execution process is one of the most critical business risks (Hrebiniak, 2013). If implemented incorrectly, strategy remains only a vision, not a movement cascaded down through the organization nor transformed into action. However, if those challenges are tackled right and companies establish a clear and stable connection between the executive board and the operational business, the organization’s performance reaches a whole new dimension. The key issue is that multiple factors are involved and an effective implementation needs to be able to individually address different hierarchy levels.
Business Simulations used in training and organizational learning and development initiatives can help you to close the strategy execution gap effectively and sustainably.