I have spent twenty-five years fascinated by learning what motivates people and how organizational systems work. I learned a great deal about what does and doesn’t work, and I have a passion for helping business executives and entrepreneurs make a real difference in their industries and their communities.
What We Believe Becomes Our Reality
Organizations have options they have never dreamed of and opportunities to be successful beyond their wildest imaginations. Unfortunately, because too many don’t know how, they also don’t believe it is possible; what we believe often becomes our reality. I dedicated myself to helping organizations see the opportunities inherent in the marketplace and provide them with the tools they need to capitalize on them. Success can be yours if you believe it can be and learn how to achieve it.
Breakthrough Growth is Possible
The kind of success I am talking about can be seen in real stories of other companies, companies that redefined their industry, doubled their business, recast their culture, and achieved operational excellence. I call this Breakthrough Growth, and it is achievable.
This article is the first of an eight-part series to help you break through traditional growth barriers. Any one of these eight lessons, applied with confidence and persistence, can make a difference. Collectively, they can drive significant outcomes. Are you ready to begin a journey of Breakthrough Growth?
The Implementation Challenge
The first lesson I will share with you addresses the number one challenge I hear when I speak with leadership groups about breakthrough growth: execution. The issues with execution are common and somewhat predictable.
Implementation should be the logical outcome of a well-done plan but too often, strategic growth planning is the result of a one-day retreat or a few rushed meetings, summarized in a document that only those who were there could understand. Does that sound familiar?
Three essential phases
There are three essential phases of an effective plan. Discovery comes when you understand the importance of thinking about the business in new ways that shine the light on market-driven growth opportunities. The better the market insight, the more likely you will have market success.
Development is the result of the shared leadership journey to craft the strategy that provides the future direction and breakthrough growth for the organization. When the team jointly participates in the ah-ha moment(s), alignment and commitment permeates the organization, through it’s leaders.
The company breakthrough occurs when the entire organization gets on board to journey to the next level of success and achieve breakthrough growth; this is the delivery phase. Breakthrough growth is rarely achieved by one person working in a silo. For implementation to take place, all stakeholders must know what is expected of them and be motivated to deliver.
Why Do Plans Fail?
Failure to perform the step of Discovery and/or to create an implementation plan are the most common reason for failed plans. Market knowledge, not what the company likes to do best, must be the foundation on which the strategy is built. Without an implementation plan that brings the strategy into the daily operations of the company, the plan will not succeed.
Three Key Success Principles for Implementation
It is essential that the resources of the company be aligned with the priorities of the company.
May companies do not expend enough effort communicating where they are going, what is needed to get there and each person’s role in helping them achieve it.
In order to make things happen, there needs to be greater visibility of the priorities throughout the organization and the progress of those initiatives. The entire company needs to be able to see and touch what is changing and be made to feel a part of the change. The leadership team needs to know where things are and how they are progressing to ensure the plan stays on track.
Alignment is Key
If you remember nothing else from this series, remember that alignment will allow your implementation to sink or swim. Alignment is getting your organization to move in one direction. Think about rowing a boat. If there were four people in a boat, each with two oars, all rowing at a different pace and maybe facing different directions, that boat might be spinning or capsizing rather than going forward. All the oars in the water need to move in a synchronized fashion. For that to happen, the direction must be equally clear to all, the specific assignment for each person must be clear, the individuals must be willing and able to fulfill that role and they must have the resources to pul it off.
Is Your Team Pulling You to Breakthrough Growth
To recap, your strategic vision must be built on market realities, and it needs a clear implementation plan that turns your organization into a team pulling together, in the same direction. Next week we will explore the Action Plan that will ensure that alignment.