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Strategic Discipline Blog

Think Through Strategy: Why

Posted by Douglas A Wick on Mon, Oct 1, 2018

50 of execs no Winning Strategy- Playing to WinFew leaders know how to craft an effective strategy. 

50% of executives do not think they have a winning strategy.

The Right Strategy results in top line revenue growth.

A recent article in strategy+business, 10 Principles of Strategy through Execution, shared another alarming statistic.  

700 business executives, asked to rate their company’s top leaders skill at strategy creation and at execution responded, that only 8 percent were very effective at both.(Strategy& global survey)

It’s challenging to create and implement effective strategy.

Playing to Win authors, Lafley and Martin, acknowledge the difficulty in creating effective strategy.  Martin discloses how vulnerable and ineffective he felt his first several attempts to help companies create strategy.

Strategy is an iterative process.

It requires repetition. Teamwork, and patience!

Playing to Win notes, “No individual, and certainly not the CEO, would try to craft and deliver a strategy alone. Creating a truly robust strategy takes the capabilities, knowledge, and experience of a diverse team—a close-knit group of talented and driven individuals, each aware of how his or her own effort contributes to the success of the group and all dedicated to winning as a collective.

Strategy is formulated at all levels of the organization, and to be successful, it needs to be clearly communicated at all levels as well.”

Strategy Drives Decision-Making

strategic-execution-alignmentFriday I had lunch with a former customer and CEO.  A key factor in his company’s recent growth initiative, he acknowledged, is the result of the Strategy Statement we crafted 5 years ago.  He credited it for their success in direction, metrics, and communicating more effectively with his leadership team and employees.

In 10 Principles of Strategy through Execution, #4, Clarify Everyone’s Strategic Role, the article notes, “The people in your day-to-day operations — wherever they are, and on whatever level — are continually called upon to make decisions on behalf of the enterprise. If they are not motivated to deliver the strategy, the strategy won’t reach the customers. It is well established that financial rewards and other tangible incentives will go only so far in motivating people. Workers cannot make a greater personal commitment unless they understand why their jobs make a difference, and why the company’s advancement will help their own advancement.”

Most company’s strategy is vague, and rarely clearly articulated.

As History Lesson On Clarity – Strategy Statement shared, 81 percent of employees are not held accountable for regular progress on the organization’s goals. Goals are not translated into specific actions—87 percent had no clear idea what they should be doing to achieve the goal.

Positioning Systems Strategic Discipline helps you Achieve Execution Excellence through a Clear One Thing Priority, Measurable Performance Metrics, and a Cadence of Accountability through Meeting Rhythms.  Need help with top line revenue growth, and a culture of accountability in your organization? Schedule an appointment today:

STRATEGY DEFINED: Strategy is an integrated set of choices uniquely positioning your firm in its industry to create sustainable advantage and superior value relative to the competition.

What is Winning - Not Playing to WinYour strategy has no value when the systems and people in your business fail to deliver on the choices intended to provide sustainable advantage and superior value to your competitor.

When you ask yourself why your people are not accountable; why they fail to perform to the level you expect, is your strategy clear? 

Unless your people know how their performance ties to your company strategy, greater personal commitment is impossible. Unless your people understand why their jobs make a difference, why the company’s advancement will help their own advancement, can you truly expect their commitment?

A Harmonious Culture of Accountability

In our ScalingUp coaching practices we define the outcome of getting People Right in your organization as A Harmonious Culture of Accountability.

Does your organization have a harmonious culture of accountability?

Just ahead of my new customers’ Numbers weekly meeting section I shared the following quote with the leadership team to emphasize the importance of the leadership team getting daily metrics for their team members

Playing to Win - What is Winning“Do the people in your company know how well they’ve done before they go home every night?  People perform what they measure – help the performers to measure the “right” stuff.

-         Ralph C. Stayer & James Belasco, Flight of the Buffalo

Each of the Four Decisions to drive growth in your business is integrated. Just as your Strategy is an integrated set of choices.

To achieve a harmonious culture of accountability your people need to know what’s expected of them at work.  Your strategy, it’s metrics determines your people’s expectations and metrics.

Without a winning aspiration, where to play, how to win, standards and systems for your core capabilities, your people are blind. They’re rudderless, and you as the leader are floundering.

Time to create an effective strategy?

Growth demands Strategic Discipline.

Positioning Systems helps your business achieve these outcomes on the Four most Important Decisions your business faces:












We help your business achieve Execution Excellence.

Positioning Systems helps mid-sized ($5M - $250M) business Scale-UP. Have you been avoiding a conversation with yourself on how to successfully grow your business? Contact to Scale Up your business! Take our Four Decisions Needs Assessment to discover how your business measures against other Scaled Up companies. We’ll contact you.

Playing to Win Do it Yourself GuideNext Blog – STRATEGY LOGIC FLOW DOS AND DON’TS

Strategy Logic flow is the process Playing to Win outlines to help craft a differentiating strategy.  Next blog some do’s, don’ts, and steps to craft your winning strategy.


Topics: strategy, Strategy Statement, strategy decisions, Playing To Win, Stategy - Why

Challenges of Scaling Up a Business 







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Positioning Systems Brand Promise

1. Priorities: Determine your #1 Priority. Achieve measurable progress in 90 days.

2. Metrics: Develop measurable Key Performance Indicators. 

3. Meetings: Establish effective meeting rhythms. (Cadence of Accountability)  Compounding the value of your priority and metrics. 

(BRAND PROMISE GUARANTEE): We will refund all compensation if our disciplined coaching and proprietary tools fail to meet your expectations.

Certified Gazelles Coach

Doug Wick, President

Positioning Systems


The Strategic Discipline Blog focuses on midsize business owners with a ravenous appetite to improve his or her leadership skills and business results.

Our 3 disciplines include:

- Priorities
- Metrics
- Meeting Rhythms

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