Strategy Execution: Time to Act

Carter had just about had it with strategy conversations. Ever since his department was assigned a new director, Carter spent most of his time in meetings discussing the team’s strategic goals and how those fit within the organization’s plan. If he had to look at one more SPOT analysis or provide data for another balanced scorecard, he was afraid he would lose it. Carter had the utmost respect for his director, Joe, and the strategic planning process, but he was ready to move out of the planning phase and into execution.

Based on the results of his Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, Carter understood why he was itching to act. As an ESTJ, he was detail-oriented, pragmatic, and efficient. Carter was a doer, and in terms of strategy, he was weary of conceptualizing and ready to execute!

Also assertive, Carter decided to present Joe with a plan – but this one involving action. Carter reviewed the latest iteration of his organization’s balanced scorecard and chose one strategic objective for each quadrant.

Financial Perspective: Increase profitability

 

Learning Perspective: Grow a thriving sales training staff

 

 

Internal Perspective: Be a benchmark in customer service

 

 

Customer Perspective: Be the industry brand of choice

 

 

With a snapshot of the strategic plan in hand, Carter chose three execution steps to get started: isolate actionable elements of the plan, define organization units to address these items, and turn priority issues into program action plans.

  1. Isolate actionable elements of the plan. Carter took a main objective for each of the four balanced scorecard quadrants, determined during the planning phase, and assigned one “first step” action item to each.
Financial Perspective: Increase profitability

 

 

Action: Build a business plan to develop one new revenue stream.

Learning Perspective: Grow a thriving sales training staff

 

Action: Revamp the salesforce recruitment and selection process.

Internal Perspective: Be a benchmark in customer service

 

Action: Adopt a software-based tracking system to streamline the customer service process.

Customer Perspective: Be the industry brand of choice

 

Action: Develop brand awareness via social media channels.

 

  1. Define organization units to address actionable items. Carter built in organizational accountability by assigning one primary function to take on each of the big picture action items.
Financial Perspective: Increase profitability

 

 

Action: Build a business plan to develop one new revenue stream.

 

Function: Product development

Learning Perspective: Grow a thriving sales training staff

 

Action: Revamp the salesforce recruitment and selection process.

 

Function: Talent development

Internal Perspective: Be a benchmark in customer service

 

Action: Adopt a software-based tracking system to streamline the customer service process.

 

Function: Customer Service

Customer Perspective: Be the industry brand of choice

 

Action: Develop brand awareness via social media channels.

 

Function: Marketing

 

  1. Turn priority issues into program action plans. Finally, with actions determined and people mobilized, Carter suggested each team convene and collaborate to implement next steps using the graphic timeline facilitation guide.

Carter shared his strategy execution plan with Joe, who was thrilled at the initiative his ESTJ employee had taken. And, as Joe liked to do with assertive and solutions-oriented staff, he asked Carter to lead the taskforce assigned to make Step 8 of the strategic planning process – execution and review – an organizational reality.

How is your organization faring with its strategy process? Have you made the leap from planning to execution? Organization development consulting firm Brighter Strategies has extensive experience assisting nonprofit leaders as they craft and implement their strategies. Please contact us to learn more.