Do your managers know the strategy of your organization?

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Most organizations, both at the highest level and the departmental level, are supposed to have a strategy.  And the managers of these organization are expected to execute that strategy.  Seems simple enough, but let’s test these assumptions.

Think about your organization.  What is the overall strategy?  Can you articulate it from memory?  Can you look it up somewhere?  What activities are you doing in your department that support the strategy?  Do you know where the strategy comes from?

Now think about your department and the managers in it.  Do they know the organization’s overall strategy? Can they articulate it from memory or look it up somewhere?  Do they know where it comes from?  And. . . do they have a strategy articulated for how they execute the larger strategy?

Let’s take a look at which quadrant your organization or department may be in:

In this view, I’ve placed four general possibilities in the grid.  On the Y-axis, we have the scale of whether the overall organization has a clearly defined and articulated strategy.   The lower on the axis, the less the strategy is articulated and the more it is assumed to be implied, or, perhaps, completely lacking.  On the X-axis, you have manager awareness of the strategy.  Sure it’s important to have a strategy, but how aware are your managers of it?  The further you go to the right on the X-axis, the more the manager is able to articulate and interpret the strategy.

According to the Manager by Design management/leadership model, managers are generally in charge of strategy execution, so this would seem to be an important thing to examine!   Read more