Execution of a successful strategy relies on three things: a well-defined sense of direction, the talent to execute it, and operational processes. Therefore, the first step is to know what you want to do and then to assess your people and their capabilities. Only then can you develop the operational processes to implement the strategy.
Although separate from the strategy, succession planning goes hand in glove with it. Knowing who is in your pipeline and when they will be ready to advance helps you make decisions about growth and change.
Clarify and prioritize expectations. Discuss what the objectives are to support the strategy and outline the tactics for achieving the goals. Set timelines, typically at the 30/60/90 day marks, and discuss progress.
Once strategic objectives are clear, delegate them to the lowest possible level in the organization, along with the authority to carry out decisions. Delegate entire projects, not pieces of it. Allow the person to “own” the task.
Clarify decision rights, roles, and responsibilities among members of the leadership team and then among members of each implementation team.
Realize you are a target for you competition. Devise a plan for how you would attack yourself if you were a rival, and then build a fortress to protect what you have.
Frequently and constantly identify the goals and vision of your customers. Make sure you anticipate and meet customers’ needs.
Patent and defend your intellectual property.
Continuously monitor performance. Reward and develop top performers and remove non-performers.
Successful execution and change rely on each other, but they are distinct. Change needs to have specific ties to the strategy and not exist in a vacuum. New products and expanded markets will bring change, but only when the organization firmly grounds these changes in the strategy does implementation stand to succeed in fulfilling the vision.