So far this year I have been engaged to help numerous Fortune 500 companies develop strategic plans for use of social technology. The firms represent education, manufacturing, telecommunications, wireless media and network infrastructure market segments.
The engagements have included market research, brainstorming creative uses of social technology and a strategic plan for capturing the market opportunities. In each case the client’s aim was to create market differential and a stronger relationship with the markets they serve.
All of these engagements enabled me to learn the different nuances of each market and the current status of the markets use of social technology. In each case the fundamentals of engaging and listening to the market of conversations remained the same. The engagements were centric to helping the organization build an effective strategy and related tactics. In each case the one critical element that would determine the success of the proposed plan was the effective execution of the plan.
Will Management Buy Into The Plan?
In management, the ultimate measure of performance is the metric of management effectiveness which includes execution, or how well management’s plans are carried out by members of the organization. Execution is not a singular or silo process rather it encompasses the following attributes:
- leadership, or how effectively management communicates and translates the vision and strategy of the organization to the members
- delegation, or how well management gives assignments and communicates instructions to members of the organization
- return on investment, or how well management utilizes the resources (financial, physical, and human) of the organization to bring an acceptable return to shareholders
- conflict management, or how well management is able to utilize confrontation and collaboration skills; management’s ability to be flexible and appeal to common interests.
- motivation, how management attempts to understand the needs of others and inspires them to perform. Motivation focuses on how performance is rewarded rather than how failure is punished.
- consideration, or how well managers seek to understand and appreciate others’ values; and not merely as a means to a business goal.
Developing a Strategic 2.0 plan is an exercise which examines the market opportunity and specific initiatives for the organizations to capture said opportunities. As organizations pursue web 2.0 initiatives they must consider the “systemic” impact of these initiatives and thus assess and improve the related management attributes or the strategy will be doomed to fail.
In a “connected world” organizations cannot succeed with Strategic 2.0 plans unless the organizations is connected. Consider the brands who have tried to execute initiatives using social technology. The old 80/20 rule applies. 80% or more fail while 20% succeed. Why? Because 80% consider a Strategic 2.0 plan as a marketing initiative rather than a plan to transform the entire company into a “connected” organization 2.0 which leverages a Strategic 2.0 plan. Execution 2.0 requires a total organizational transformation. Get it? No? Then the gap will cost you dearly..
What say you?