Operationalizing the Vision

Operationalizing the Vision

Two critical components of leadership are vision and implementation. Vision is where you want to go. Implementation is how you will get there. While vision is focused on the future, leaders must first address their current reality. That is, we are at X, but we want the organization to go to Y. Here is our comprehensive operating plan to do it.

To operationalize the leader’s vision, everyone must know where the organization is going, so decisions and actions make sense. The operating plan must then be reviewed with functional leaders on a regular basis. Leaders must ask, “How are we doing against the plan?” “What areas need attention?” “What is our plan to address them?”

Candor and transparency are also required to create accountability and positive pressure. To address areas that need attention, the culture must promote discussing bad news and asking for help. People have often seen the same or similar issues before and know how to fix them. Remember, people are not “red.” Areas they are working on are red.

In addition to relentless implementation, strategic renewal is part of operating plan reviews as execution is evaluated against KPIs (e.g., revenue, expenses, etc.) and risk and opportunity are assessed in current and future environments. Ultimately, the data tells the leader how they are doing against realizing their vision. The data sets them free.

All contents copyright © 2013, Josh Lowry. All rights reserved.

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