Using Accountability to Improve Strategy Implementation

How to encourage managers to take ownership of their part of the strategy goal.

Using Accountability to Improve Strategy Implementation

You have designed a great strategy, developed a implementation plan and put in place measures to track your progress. So why are you still struggling to implement it? Although each of the elements listed above are important, they are not enough - strategic success also relies upon your managers and staff actively engaging with the implementation plan. Most important, if your managers’ focus is elsewhere, getting a strategy implemented will be much harder than it needs to be…

Why is this hard?

In most organisations, managers are already heavily committed to and accountable for delivery of their ‘day job’; for them to find the extra time and resources to support strategy implementation activities can be difficult. The issue arose during a recent 2GC project in the Middle East: the existing methods of assigning goals and accountability within the organisation did not explicitly include consideration of its strategic priorities - managers were assigned goals and objectives for their ‘day job’ but not for supporting the implementation of the strategy. We worked with the organisation to fix this.

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What did we do?

We built consideration of accountability into our work right from the beginning by getting the organisations managers actively involved in deciding both on how to implement the organisation’s strategy and who would do it. The first step was with the executive team to choose and agree where they wanted the organisation to go to, and how it would get there. By clearly articulating this ‘destination’ and the route they should follow to get there (via clear and measurable objectives), it was made easier for executive team members to know what was required of their part of the organisation to implement the strategy, and to find out whether they had the means to do it. In addition, accountability for strategic objectives were distributed across the executive team - each of them being responsible for achieving a part of the strategy.

This approach was repeated at lower levels within each of the major functional departments of the organisation - cascading the strategy, clarifying how units would contribute and assigning accountability to managers - increasing their engagement with and responsibility for the strategy.

2GC has observed four critical pre-requisites that will help you build strong accountability in your organisation:

  • Clearly articulated strategic goals
  • Strong two-way communication with Managers, to ensure they are fully aware of what they need to deliver
  • Effective measurement of progress towards the strategic goals
  • Active engagement by managers to support the implementation programme.

Accountability...what to do next?

2GC’s practical experience of, and world-class methods for supporting strategy implementation have been shown to be highly effective. Based on proven methodologies, and backed up by a multi-lingual international team, 2GC’s approach is one you should consider using in your organisation. For more information, get in touch! info@2GC.eu, +44 1628 421506

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