We get the chance to chat with folks who are interested in implementing strategy deployment software within their organizations almost every day. Most of the people we talk to really understand the need for this kind of solution and how it can benefit their company. Convincing others, however, can be a challenge. Not everyone immediately recognizes the valuable returns that a structured approach to strategy execution can provide. We’d like to help. Here are the most important elements of a compelling case for strategy deployment software, along with some relevant quotes from business leaders and other visionaries.
Strategy Deployment is the Most Important Responsibility of the Executive Team
“Strategy execution is the responsibility that makes or breaks executives.” - Alan Branche and Sam Bodley-Scott
Most c-level executives would never consider doing the company's taxes on the back of a napkin or using spreadsheets in place of a CRM, so why would they want to try to manage their most vital duty in email and Word documents? If something is important, it is worth the investment to make it successful and nothing is more important than deploying and executing the organization’s strategy.
Clear Communication is Critical
“The result of bad communication is a disconnection between strategy and execution.” - Chuck Martin, former vice president, IBM
International business expert and speaker, Jeroen De Flander once said, “Most of us know the marketing concept of good communication. To make a message stick in the head of a future consumer, you need to deliver the message seven times using seven different channels. Why do executives think that to make a strategy stick, a boring speech delivered once will be enough?” This is a great point. Too often, the ”strategy” exists in a document that gets trotted out once or twice a year. Strategy deployment software helps bring it to life and put it front and center for each employee, every day. Nothing is lost in translation or forgotten.
Organizational Alignment is Essential
“Building a visionary company requires one percent vision and 99 percent alignment.” - Jim Collins and Jerry Porras, Built to Last
Strategy deployment software helps ensure that each person in the organization understands the strategy and what they need to do to achieve it. Individual objectives can be easily aligned to the short and long-term goals, allowing people to make better decisions more quickly and to apply a sense of purpose to every task.
Achieving Breakthrough Objectives Requires a Different Mindset
“Execution is a specific set of behaviors and techniques that companies need to master in order to have competitive advantage. It’s a discipline of its own.” - Ram Charan and Larry Bossidy
Strategy deployment is about defining and achieving the types of breakthrough successes that will change the organization’s future over the next three to five years. Software designed to support strategy execution requires a certain type of discipline that helps pave the path to the organization’s next phase.
Results Should be Measured in Real-Time
“However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results.”- Sir Winston Churchill
Checking in on the progress toward strategic objectives annually, quarterly, or even monthly will not typically achieve the desired outcome. Strategy deployment software gives leaders a way to visually access results every day so that they can be proactive in responding to unfavorable conditions as soon as momentum stalls.
Strategy Execution Doesn’t Happen in a Vacuum
“You’ve got to think about big things while you’re doing small things, so that all the small things go in the right direction.” - Alvin Toffler
It is easy for executives and front-line employees alike to get distracted by the day-to-day needs of the business and lose sight of the big picture. Strategy deployment and supporting methodologies like Hoshin Kanri are all about helping the organization walk and chew gum at the same time. By leveraging dashboards, reports, alerts and notifications, teams can ensure that daily management and work on long-term goals happen simultaneously.
Milestones Should be Celebrated
“Plans are only good intentions unless they immediately degenerate into hard work.”- Peter Drucker
The best strategy in the world is only a dream until individual members of the team go out and make it happen. This requires employee engagement and the willingness to extend discretionary effort. Recognition and broadcasting success go a long way toward compelling people to do something extra. Employee reward and recognition programs are great, but sometimes all it takes is the acknowledgment and thanks of executive leadership. Strategy deployment software makes it easy to notice and share each important achievement.
For more details on the features of strategy, deployment software, check out this post. You can also find the answers to some of the most common questions we get right here. We hope that we’ve given you some food for thought and a few good arguments to use when you make your case for technology to support strategy execution. I’ll leave you with one of my favorite quotes on the concept. (It might be a good introduction if you are doing a presentation on the reasons to invest in strategy deployment software.)
“It’s not enough to be busy, so are the ants. The question is, what are we busy about?” - Henry David Thoreau