How to Execute on a Strategy
What is one tip for moving from strategy to execution?
To help you properly execute your business strategy, we asked entrepreneurs and
project management professionals this question for their best pieces of advice. From
understanding the tactics that support the strategy to holding yourself accountable, there
are several tips that may help you keep your strategies progressing forward.
Here are seven tips for moving from strategy to execution
- Understand the Tactics that Support the Strategy
- End Every Interaction with a Call to Action
- Use Objectives to Guide a Countdown Schedule
- Dedicate Several Hours Per Week for Strategy Work
- Break it Down into Actionable Pieces
- Get Everyone on Board with the Plan
- Hold Yourself Accountable
Understand the Tactics that Support the Strategy
Having a good grasp of the initiatives and tactics that make up a strategy will make it easier to execute. For every higher-level strategic objective (think: build robust external relations engine) there must be a list of tangible, practical, and executable initiatives below it (think: author monthly thought leadership pieces to share on all channels). Once you understand the tactical tasks and granular "to dos" that will lead to strategic success, you can easily determine how to execute.
Sentari Minor, evolvedMD
End Every Interaction with a Call to Action
End every meeting with a call to action, and begin subsequent meetings with a brief status update. Being in the routine of turning ideas into tangible progress helps align your efforts to the strategy and maintain realistic expectations for execution. The rhythm of asking “What action are we taking?” and “What progress are we making?” is a simple and powerful practice to stay productive and work smarter.
Tommy Chang, Homelister
Use Objectives to Guide a Countdown Schedule
Use your strategic objectives to develop a detailed countdown schedule. Do this by taking the objectives of your strategy and writing down everything that needs to happen to get there in a T-minus plan. Then, treat that t-minus as your to-dos and project manager. Using a T-minus schedule ensures that every project task is finished prior to completion and launch.
Marilyn Zubak, Snif
Dedicate Several Hours Per Week for Strategy Work
Once you have a clear strategy for your business, it’s essential that you set aside dedicated time to implement the strategy. Many times, our strategies may be needed to evolve our products or services, create new service offerings, connect with prospects, or otherwise adjust our marketing. We need to set aside time to do these important tasks; if we don't, the operational tasks and fires of the week will dominate our time. The best way that I have found is to block this time on your calendar. Then, protect the time, remove distractions and get to work on implementing your strategy.
Jennifer Drago, Peak to Profit, LLC
Break It Down into Actionable Pieces
Breaking a strategy down into smaller actionable pieces is one of the best tips to move from strategy to execution. Each action step will be a component of the whole that brings your entire strategy to life. Each action item needs to be connected to a deadline, a person in charge of reaching that date, and an overall manager to make sure the team is meeting deadlines and that progress is being tracked.
Breaking down a plan into manageable components makes it easier to comprehend. The strategy specifies a broad destination and generally how you're going to get there. You can see progress toward the main objective as particular tasks are finished and their impacts are measured.
More individuals can be involved in the strategic management process when you break the strategy down into action items. You can keep these tasks on track by reviewing your approach frequently, such as monthly or quarterly.
Maneesh Sharma, Donorbox
Get Everyone on Board with the Plan
One key component of being successful in execution is to make sure all stakeholders or team members agree on every part of the strategy. There are times when people don't agree but will hold back expressing their viewpoints. That can spell doom during execution because they don't want to participate as an enthusiastic person would. You must find a way to make sure everyone is committed to the plan and ready to see it through to the end, even if there are bumps along the way. That must be communicated before executing it.
Amruth Laxman, 4Voice
Hold Yourself Accountable
As a young entrepreneur I faced a hard question, how can I move my start-up from the strategy stage to execution? This one tip is the key to success: Accountability.
Accountability separates successful entrepreneurs from those who never make it past
the planning stages. It's what drives you to take action even when you're feeling unsure or scared. It's what keeps you going when things get tough. If you want to be a successful entrepreneur, you need to be accountable to yourself and your business. You need to set goals and work towards them every day. You need to track your progress and celebrate your successes.
There are many ways to find an accountability partner or group, including online forums, networking events, mentorship programs, and online communities for entrepreneurs. Once you've found one that feels like a good fit for you, make sure to set clear expectations about frequency of check-ins, level of involvement, and confidentiality before getting started.
Shawn Ryan, Techtopia