Closing the Gap – Achieving true organizational alignment on Strategy

2 apr, 2024
Closing the Gap – <strong>Achieving true organizational alignment on Strategy</strong>

CEOs often assume that the company’s strategy is well aligned across the organization. A study from 2023 published in HBR shows that this is far from being the reality. It shows that a significant discrepancy exists between perceived and actual strategic alignment. The study across 12 organizations reveals an average of 82% perceived alignment but only 23% actual alignment, resulting in skepticism, sluggish implementation, diminished quality – and in the end poor results compared to what would have been possible.

In Blue Note this resonates perfectly with what we have experienced over the last 10 years. When we work with our customers on becoming excellent on Strategy Execution, we see that the BIG challenge is less to get the top management aligned, but to make sure that this alignment cascade further to middle management and in the end to employee level.

This dissonance between perception and reality isn’t merely an academic curiosity – it exacts a heavy toll on businesses. The cost, both tangible and intangible, can be staggering. It hinders employees taking ownership and shoving accountability, because it creates confusion on where we are heading and what we want to achieve – and nobody delivers to their best in such an environment.

So, let us give you some insights on how we work with companies to secure this very important strategic alignment across the whole organization.

We have called our approach Promise-Based Execution, and it isn’t just another management buzzword; it’s a transformative approach that ensures holistic alignment across organizations. At its core lies the principle of fostering ownership and accountability at every level. It’s about empowering individuals to see themselves as integral parts of a larger strategic narrative, each responsible for their contributions to the overall strategy.

But what sets Promise-Based Execution (PBE) apart? It’s not merely about dictating strategies from the top down; it’s about cultivating a culture of dialogue, collaboration, and shared commitment. By fostering a sense of ownership, individuals become stakeholders in the strategic journey, rather than passive bystanders.

PBE secures cross alignment both vertically and horizontally in the organization – creating 100% clarity on Team’s and individual’s contribution to both strategy AND operation success. It teaches everyone to be clear and proactive in getting commitment (handshake) on most critical dependencies between individuals across the organization. In essence, PBE makes people take ownership of their own contribution – kind of acting as “CEOs of their own mini-enterprises”.

Moreover, Promise-Based Execution doesn’t just stop at aligning individuals with the strategy; it extends to every facet of organizational operations. From frontline employees to C-suite executives, everyone is united in a common purpose, pulling in the same direction towards shared goals.

In essence, Promise-Based Execution represents a paradigm shift – a departure from traditional top-down approaches towards a more inclusive, participatory model of strategic execution. By placing ownership and accountability at the forefront, organizations can bridge the gap between perception and reality, ensuring true alignment with their strategic visions.

It’s time to close the gap and embark on a journey towards true alignment – one promise at a time.

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This playbook is about how you can improve your Strategy Execution by tapping into the Power of Promises – why not start improving today.

Promise-Based Execution Book

Promise-Based Execution

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40-60% of a company's strategic potential is lost due to poor execution, poor understanding of customer needs or company culture not supporting the ambitions.