“How can you create a harmonized team and get the best out of your team members? At times, a strategy can be solely focused on customers, profit margin, etc. and doesn’t take the internal team or employees into account.”
Well, there are two ways to interpret this question. The first is around how to establish and drive your strategic implementation team, and the second has to do with considering your internal team with respect to your strategic initiatives. Just for fun (and because I think this is what the question is actually driving at), I’m going to address this one through that second lens.
When developing strategic initiatives, it is natural to think about what you want to do in the marketplace and how you want to compete: What kind of product do you want to develop? What markets will you sell to? How will you price, promote, and place your products? But supporting all of these great new initiatives will be people from inside your own company. And sometimes we forget to develop strategic initiatives around them as well.
What systems do you need? What resources will you need to hire? How will you support those resources with adequate processes, tools, and training to fully enable them to carry out your external initiatives? These are all things that need to be considered in your strategy, and these are all things that, if they are not properly invested in, will ultimately prevent your strategy from ever being executed.
So, the easiest answer that I can give to your question is to make a conscious effort to include these considerations as an integral part of your strategic initiatives. One way to ensure this is to use a methodology that I talked about in my book, Creative Strategy Generation, that I call the Strategic Perspectives Tool. In its simplest form, this tool encourages you to view your strategy through 3 different lenses; a customer lens, a competitive lens, and a company lens.
Through the customer lens, you try to consider your initiatives from a customer’s point of view. How will they react? How will they benefit?
Through the competitive lens, you view your initiatives as a competitor would. How will they interpret your plan? What might they do in response?
Through the company lens, you view your initiatives from the standpoint of your employees and shareholders. How will your company benefit? Will your employees have everything they need to carry out the plan?
Typically, I use these perspectives as a checkpoint for my strategy. Then, if there is something I forgot to consider, I go back and account for it in my plan. And if you view your strategy through your employees’ eyes, it will be pretty difficult to ever leave them out altogether.
Listen to the podcast episode
Dear Strategy: Episode 023