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3 Steps to a Successful Strategy Implementation

September 3, 2015




Everyone knows workplace culture is important. In many cases, a company’s culture is more important than its strategy or operating model. A few years ago, a consulting company in Singapore did a study with 200 companies. Their results showed 9 out of 10 strategic initiatives failed because leaders didn’t focus on changing people’s behaviours and how they worked together.


Do you have new business requirements and strategies that will require different behaviours and a shift in corporate culture? Unless you focus on changing how people work together how can you expect different results? Einstein said that doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is… insanity.


If Einstein was at your workplace, he might say “Leading, managing and behaving in the same old ways while expecting your employees to embrace new work habits and higher levels of collaboration is cultural insanity.”


In your annual planning sessions, do you see strategies coming back… year-after-year because your organization didn’t implement them successfully? One reason might be because your current culture, the way people are working today, is out of alignment with the strategies you’re trying to implement.

May I help you increase your strategy implementation success?

It’s as easy as 1…2…3…


Step 1

Identify all the stakeholders who are impacted by the strategies you wish to implement. A stakeholder is any person or group who has an interest in your success.


Step 2
Conduct an environmental scan with your key stakeholders and identify the drivers for change. They are the impetus and motivation for change, providing the change effort’s relevance and meaning. Drivers are the purpose for those leading the change as well as those who are going to be affected by the change. People need to understand and accept the compelling reasons for change before they will commit to changing their behaviours.


Worksheet – Compelling Reasons for Change
Purpose: To build commitment for cultural transformation by conducting an environmental scan and identifying the compelling reasons for change.


Stakeholder Analysis & Environment Scan

Stakeholder analysis:
Who are our stakeholders?
What do they need from us?
How do we serve them?


External business environment:
What changes are affecting our organization and generating new business imperatives?


Internal business environment:
How do we constantly learn from our experiences and daily operations?
How do team members bring themselves fully to work?


Organizational and social structures:
How do we develop clarity on team objectives between all stakeholders?
How does the team best organize itself to deliver on priorities?


The forces that hold the team together:
What is the level of trust on the team? Using the Trust Matrix below, plot five areas of strength and five areas that need developing.
What would motivate team members to give more to this team versus other teams?



Step 3

The most challenging struggles identified in the drivers for change deal with leaders’ and team members’ behaviours and mindset. They need to develop awareness, ownership, and responsibility for the internal drivers of change such as personal behaviors and values. This is because organizations do not change: it is the people in them that do. For sustained success and real change to happen, the change must begin at the base, in the mindset and values of leaders and staff. When mindsets change, new thinking and strategies emerge, making new behaviors possible, sparking a rippling effect up the drivers of change.


This post was first published at Culture Leadership Group's blog.


About The Author

Joanna Barclay, Speaker, Author, Leadership Consultant building high performing values-driven organizational culture.


With 30 years in business transformation working with organizations, Joanna’s passion lies in working with leaders, facilitating active participation in organizational change, developing resourceful teams and aligning strategic objectives. Her goal is to help organizations become high performing and values-driven, where people take ownership, build commitment and bridge communication gaps. As CEO of the Culture Leadership Group, she ensures successful transformation from concept through to implementation.

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