Gartner writes an excellent blog post about the “9 Steps to Successful Functional Strategic Planning”
In Gartner’s Strategy Agenda Poll, “60% of corporate strategists cite slow strategy execution as their biggest challenge of the year”. With this knowledge, we would like to offer our reflections on how to best address this and overcome that challenge.
Get an overview of the strategy in one designated place
If a company struggle with strategy execution, they will benefit from using Strategy Orchestrator where they will get an up to date knowledge of how the company's strategy is executed and worked on. It also offers the possibility to drill down into different aspects of the strategy, identifying possible discrepancies at an early stage.
Ensure that the stakeholders buy-in
When a strategy is introduced in a company, it is often limited to a few managers who are then expected to distribute the concept of the strategic plan of the company to their employees. A lot of information is lost along the way, and the employees will often not feel an ownership to the plan. By using Strategy Orchestrator, all employees get access to all the relevant parts of the strategic plan. This will lead to more satisfied employees and a greater incentive to follow the plan on time.
Distribute the responsibility to the one with first hand knowledge
Relevant information is often collected by managers, and then cascaded to the correct person higher up in the hierarchy. In Strategy Orchestrator, it is possible to distribute the responsibility to the person with the closest proximity to the information, eliminating the errors that often occurs when several people are involved, and the employee feel empowered and trusted.
Eliminate the Excel sheet
A lot of information is lost when you use Excel as the reporting tool, due to files being stored in the wrong location, information is not available when you need it, people updating in the wrong column and so on. With Strategy Orchestrator, you will have everything on hand in the correct place, and collected at the designated time. With an intuitive app or in the web browser, there is never a reason not to deliver on time, and there is no one to wait for to update, so that the sheet is available for edit. The program even sends out notifications when it is time to deliver on the values, eliminating the process of nagging.
Information flow and an adaptive approach to strategy
There are often changes in the market that interfere with how a company’s strategy is executed. A plan need to change when external factors change. Even if the overall goal is the same, the way they are reached need to adapt. Often the information needed to know of the changes, lay with the employees that are far from the top management. It is therefore vital that companies have a low barrier for information flow. In Strategy Orchestrator, we open for all employees to read and comment on the strategies of the company, lowering the barrier to give feedback to top management. This again can lead to greater profit and higher commitment in the company.
Get a head on innovation
By having one place to report on strategy and communicate on strategic themes, there is a chance of new ideas arising. When an employee knows where she can communicate ideas directly to the top management, they know where they should deliver the ideas. We even put in a “new idea” check box, to make it easier to comment with a new idea, related to existing strategy. Of course the biggest job her is to communicate that the company are open for input and innovation, and that job needs to be done face to face.
In Conclusion; by using the 9 steps Gartner suggest in combination with Strategy Orchestrator, you are one step closer to be a part of the managers that feel they are in control of their strategic execution.