Message for CEO's and business owners

Imagine a major international holding company that owns several smaller companies, which are dependent on each other.

Imagine a major international holding company that owns several smaller companies, which are dependent on each other. The holding company’s new CEO has to form a leveraging strategy and provide results to the board. In order to roll this out, the new CEO involves every managing director in the process, who then involve their teams, and this collaboration proceeds on down the chain of command. Each group comes up with their own strategic plan. As a result, the company’s goals are formed within silos and not as a cohesive group. 

I’ve noticed a strange pattern with strategy planning and deployment. Somewhere between the urge to create a leveraging strategy for the entire business and the pressure to provide results, speed takes over. Haste kills the space needed to hear inner wisdom. 

Before stepping into Holistic Enterprise mentoring, I was a business owner of an SME company. Although I didn’t have to prove my results to anyone higher up than me, I did have to meet my own standards and the expectations of customers, suppliers and the people we served. My experience has provided me with a keen perspective on the constraints facing business leaders.  

Additionally, I have been very fortunate to work closely with both CEO’s and business owners from different industries. These close relationships have allowed me to follow the correlation between the success of high-performers and the long-term health of the ecosystems they manage.

 

When working with CEOs and business owners we help them develop strategies that get the results they need. Here are the main strategic planning and deployment pain points they often experience.

CEO

 

  • How can I have control over the system and have the board rely on me?

  • How can I cascade the strategy to make sure everyone knows why we need to go in this direction?

  • How can I engage people in strategy deployment?

  • What should I do so that people within the organization will value me?

  • How can I measure the business’ performance and make sure the execution is smooth?

Business Owner

  • What is the melting point of my business within the industry?
  • How can we grow without exhausting our assets?
  • How can we find a breakthrough business idea and take the business to the next level?
  • How can I predict customer needs?
  • What is the right focus for the business?
  • How can we find time to execute the focus?

CEOs or business owners can learn by asking each other’s questions. This will help a CEO learn to zoom out at the systems level, while the business owner learns to zoom in at the execution level.

5 Steps to plan and deploy your strategy without losing a Holistic business performance

Step 1: Zoom Out and Draw the System

Spend some time drawing out the entire system on a whiteboard or flipchart. It’s best to do this alone or with a Holistic Enterprise Mentor. Make sure that you connect the dependent parts and highlight the shared resources.

Step 2: Find the Leverage Points

A leverage point is a place in the system’s structure where a solution can be applied. A high leverage point is when a small amount of change at the leverage point causes a large change in system behavior. These are the leverage points that you want to find. 

How do you identify your leverage points?

Spend some time with customer service and the logistics services.  Look for your customer’s pain points. Ask questions like:

  1. What matters the most for the customers?

  2. What do customers value?

  3. What irritates customers the most?

  4. What is the customer’s ideal final result and how is it different from the one we currently provide? 

Questions like these will help reveal the gap between the value your business provides and the value you need to provide in the future.

Spend some time with your business suppliers. Understand what core dependencies you have together and the business pains they experience.

Then, take that knowledge and step back. Look at the entire system as a whole. What ONE solution can radically change the system so everyone benefits?

Step 3: Zoom In and Design Your Strategy

Your strategy needs to run both the existing business, as well as reinvent it simultaneously. Once you have your strategy laid out, think about the people who can help make it happen. Consider these questions to help you look more closely at your plan.

Business as Usual: The customer’s purpose is “xyz”. The outcome we expect from this “xyz”. The tactics achieving this are “xyz”. The people from my leadership team contributing to it are “xyz”, write their names. What kind of discipline will help to execute the strategy? What values do we want to encourage in it? What changes do we need to make to ensure that the teams can work with one purpose and without any conflicting KPIs, incentives or roles?

Business as Usual: The customer’s purpose is “xyz”. The outcome we expect from this “xyz”. The tactics achieving this are “xyz”. The people from my leadership team contributing to it are “xyz”, write their names. What kind of discipline will help to execute the strategy? What values do we want to encourage in it? What changes do we need to make to ensure that the teams can work with one purpose and without any conflicting KPIs, incentives or roles?

Step 4: Make Sure the Leadership Team is On Board

Inform your leadership team about what you uncovered. Confirm that they’re committed to living the strategy and that they will see it through to its fulfillment.

Once your leadership team understands why you’re in this business, why you want to proceed, and where you want to go, you will create speed.

You can adapt your business management model step by step, toward the future, by seeing the whole holistically.

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