Unfortunately, as seen in our Q1 Research Report on Execution, this is where most companies come up short. They are unable to execute the growth strategy they have embraced fully. A 2017 article in the Harvard Business Review noted that 67% of well-formulated strategies fail due to poor execution. That statistic by itself is not altogether surprising. What is surprising is how many CEOs still don’t put enough focus on closing the strategy-to-execution gap. Based on SBI research across hundreds of CEOs from more than 20 industries, over 60% rated setting strategy as more important than the execution of that strategy. Clearly, a disconnect remains.
How can you ensure your company doesn’t suffer the same fate? Build a Go-To-Market execution plan to define the tactical priorities needed to achieve the strategic plan.
Though the two are interrelated, many companies confuse tactics with strategy. Tactics involve doing things right. Strategy involves doing the right things. The tactic-based approach of years past is dangerous. Being efficient at tactics means companies fall into one of two buckets: they either thrive or die quickly. The strategy seals Their fate. On the other hand, companies with an effective strategy can either thrive or survive. Certainly, it’s better to be good at strategy than tactics. But in a perfect world, the two intersect, and your company will have a brilliant plan that is skillfully executed.
Here Are 5 Recommendations to Improve Your Execution Planning:
- Ensure your execution plan is itemized with dates and owners and is derived from your documented strategy. One of the leading causes of GTM execution failures can be traced back to accountability. Identify who is responsible for what, and when the target date for completion is. Don’t let deadlines slip.
- Tie the execution plan to a return on investment (ROI). Rolling out a new GTM requires significant investment. Ensure you have revenue objectives identified and aligned to the plan.
- Any tasks in the execution plan that do not lead toward strategic objectives should be discontinued. Your people and their time are your most valuable resources. Ensure they are focused on the activities that will directly impact success.
- Have an Execution Status Review Cadence. Your executive team should be meeting weekly to review progress against the plan. Panic early if deadlines and objectives begin to slip and reallocate resources as needed. Every quarter ensure that you are adjusting your execution plan to account for any changes in strategy.
- Reward your team when they meet deadlines and deliver results as designed. Rolling out a new GTM takes time and requires the whole organization to come together. Rewarding the team will keep up the momentum necessary to achieve your goals.
Get Your Team on Board
Executing on strategic initiatives like a new GTM requires an incredible amount of energy and focus. In some cases, it may require employees to rethink and reshape a business while continuing to run it on a day to day basis. Where does this energy come from? A powerful and compelling story from their leader helps employees believe in the effort by answering their big questions. These questions can range from how the new GTM will affect the company down to how it will impact them personally.
Once the vision is painted, the CEO’s role shifts to constant reinforcement. A quote from former P&G CEO Alan G. Lafley, highlights this well, “Excruciating repetition and clarity are important – employees have so many things going on in the operation of their daily business that they don’t always take the time to stop, think, and internalize.”
A powerful way to reinforce the message and keep the energy percolating is to spotlight early execution successes and share them publicly. Make it a point to show the organization the behavior that is valued and that the execution is moving in a positive direction towards desired results.
If you can do this, then you’ve found one of the most valuable keys to increasing the enterprise value of the business.