The Execution Flywheel Stage 1: Culture of Collaboration

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Goal Setting

September 3, 2012 – Developing a culture of execution doesn’t happen by accident. It takes focus, hard work, consistent effort, and a proven roadmap by which to navigate. While we can’t make the first three components any easier for you, we certainly can make your journey more directed and successful by providing a comprehensive methodology for implementing a best-of-breed Execution Management System. Our Execution Flywheel is derived from nearly one hundred years of combined management experience and has resulted in dramatic organizational transformations.

Execution Flywheel Components

The Execution Flywheel consists of three parts that, when stitched together, provide consistent, breakthrough results. First, at the core of the Execution Flywheel is AchieveIt’s six-stage methodology for the process of strategic planning, which includes both strategy development and execution management. Second, the six-stage methodology is put into action using a suite of cloud-based applications and tools, which enables organizations to execute smarter, faster, and better. Third, as organizations circumnavigate the Execution Flywheel multiple times, they naturally evolve from a culture of collaboration to a culture of individual accountability to a culture of execution. With the execution culture fully realized, organizations are then able to transform into a culture of innovation.

Over the next several weeks, we will detail the various components of the Execution Flywheel, beginning with the four stages of cultural transformation.Strategic Planning Building a Plan

As organizations develop a true Execution Management System and move toward consistent strategic business planning, they naturally evolve through four stages of cultural evolution, each with its own distinct characteristics. The speed and pace in which an organization transforms itself varies in response to many factors, including size, leadership, competitive rivalry within the industry, the threat of new entrants or market substitutes, the bargaining power of buyers and suppliers, internal constraints and capabilities, and external environmental conditions.

Typically, an organization should take no more than three years to fully evolve into a culture of execution and thus begin the final transformation to a culture of innovation. However, we’ve seen organizations complete the journey in as little as six months. The decision of how fast to move is critical to successfully hardwiring a strategy development and execution management program into the organization’s framework. These kinds of changes, according to Julia Balogun, require a shift in the underlying culture of the organization.

Stage 1: Culture of Collaboration

For most organizations, developing a culture of collaboration develops naturally. As organizations create a common vision, executive and middle managers rally together in support of one or more long-term goals. Work plans are developed and a great amount of activity takes place, but the collaborative organization often mistakes activity for results. At this stage, there is very little effort to track tactical implementation against performance targets, and being busy is often an organizational substitute for being strategic. Oftentimes, a lot gets done, but not a lot is ever accomplished.

Next week: Stage 2: Individual Accountability

building a strategic plan