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Strategy to Action

It’s not enough to identify, plan and arrive at consensus. Nimble organizations need to execute and deliver.

The implementation of the ‘Strategy to Action’ process demands a reexamination of existing assumptions, and an exploration of alternative solutions.

The Gap Between Plan and Execution

Our goal? To help you recognize the gap between your original plan and its ultimate execution. In our experience, this gap between desired and actual performance is where companies falter, with a corresponding impact on market results. And it is sensing and responding to this flaw that marks the cornerstone of a company’s ability to outperform their market.

Strategy (from planning through to its execution) is an ongoing activity, not a static state, not a PowerPoint presentation nor an Excel spreadsheet. The mettle of an organization is its inherent ability to adapt to changes in the marketplace, instinctively, speedily and succinctly.

Your company’s ability to respond with a new business model, shifts in culture or leadership corrections, will dictate your future. Your strategy is not inert.

Issue-Focused Strategy

We believe in the value of Issue-focused strategy – that is how you drive your business in the day-to-day - and strategy as a holistic, annual plan that sets overall business and corporate direction. In our view, these distinctively different views can and must coexist at any successful company. These exercises are mandatory, and mutually compatible and they support our assessment that effective strategy requires leadership, attention and continuous effort. It must also be systematic and persistent.

An organization design solution is an extension of, and is best informed by business strategy. It is an enabler of strategy. It does not dictate strategy, but allows it to unfold efficiently. If the core strategy is understood, leadership and corporate culture will be formed that naturally and normatively migrates to support it.

Our Toolbox

Growth Acceleration

Why is this important?
Those leading organizations to win in the marketplace, need to create and integrate leadership, culture and strategy as the big three transformational levers that executives have at their disposal. It is the implicit responsibility of CEOs and their c-level teams to provide the clarity, transparency, direction, alignment and resources that will engage the collective and enable the growth to occur, not just from the top down, but across the organization and the communities in which it operates.

Strategic Operations

Why is this important?
Management teams need to think and act holistically in how they can achieve the highest levels of performance. More organic, customer-driven and flexible operations tend to outperform mechanistic operations in dynamic turbulent environments. Alignment across employees, business unit processes and shared services and implementation of a fluid strategy involving productivity improvements and revenue growth can be achieved by mapping out and aligning business units efforts to overarching strategic themes and choices.

Mergers & Acquisitions

Why is this important?
Failure to achieve deal value often begins right from the due diligence process by over emphasizing the financial and transactional, while not sufficiently focusing on the acquired company’s unique blending of leadership, culture and strategy. This intense and often singular scrutiny over the balance sheet, the what that is being acquired, including existing products, services, customers and distribution channels, more often than not, ignores the how success is achieved and sustained.

Most Common Issues Found with Strategy to Action Challenges


The premise, or theory of the business upon which the business was founded or operating and not kept up with the complexity and dynamics of the current and future market.


Perpetuating market gaps where strategy is principally about creating a document or following a planning calendar and where strategic leadership is delegated to the few rather than the responsibility of the many.

Strategic Thinking

Making and taking time for the future is hard, mainly because most people are glued to the present.

Decision Makers

Are stuck in a memory loop whereby they can only predict the future based on a reflection of the past.

Decision Bias

The inability to neutralize two common and often present dynamics; the “negative fallacy” (where one sees the future as merely a slight variation on yesterday’s news) and “present bias” (the tendency to overvalue the present and undervalue the future) and continue to build strategic muscle and capability.

Diverse Views

Lack of fresh perspectives on the market, business and culture creates a situation where winners can easily become losers.


Inability for the business to find and systematize untapped profit opportunities.

Quantification & Gaps

Poor quantification and solution-ing of performance gaps, the shortfall between current business results andthose that were expected, and the opportunity gaps, the discrepancy between current business results and that which can be achieved in the marketplace.


The misguided belief that strategy, in all its power is owned by the few and/or by those who are in explicit strategy creation roles.


Not understanding that changes to strategy nearly always require changes in organizational capability. New tasks must be defined, new skills built, and often a new culture must be nurtured. Inattention to organizational capabilities will almost ensure that a promising strategy delivers disappointing results.

Strategy Problems are Systems Problems

Lack of standards in problem identification where the relationship between the problem, what’s causing the problem and related areas of impact is fully recognized and effectively addressed.

Organizational Complexity

Lack of parallel planning and management. Strategic leadership demands that execs be able to compete in exciting core businesses where cost management and incremental improvement may be key. At the same time, they must simultaneously enter new emerging growth domains where radical innovation and in-market experimentation is needed.

Strategic Management System

Poor adaptation by management team to meet a changing business environment. Weakness in: leading their senior team in the exploration and resolution of strategic issues and opportunities, commissioning projects to gain new insights and set new directions, clearly articulating the performance or opportunity gap to drive change, ascertaining and communicating the strategic significance of market and technology change, clearly articulating business strategy so that all individuals understand the strategic game plan and their role, and building in the capability and flexibility required for the business to self adjust to moderate change.

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