Robert-photo-w-icon-150-4-7-10-FINAL4-150x150Business planning is still a productive exercise. Not because the document created by the planning process is so effective but because developing the plan engages leaders from all functional areas in the company. Very few plans work as conceived; business is too unpredictable over a period of time. But companies are still accountable for getting profitable results so why do some succeed while others fail?

Few strategies are actually implemented as planned. Real world circumstances always arise to disrupt the best of plans. Every experienced business leader or military commander knows that this is the reality.

In the military, they prepare for contingencies and train their people to adapt. Experience has taught them that well-trained personnel who understand their Purpose and are committed to accomplishing their mission will often leverage their skills, initiative and teamwork to overcome unexpected barriers and accomplish their objectives.

Business leaders also accept the certainty of unpredictability, but often they underestimate the role that their people play in plan implementation. Perhaps the leaders who created the plan are sufficiently skilled, aware of their mutual goals and bonded together to refine strategies when changing or unexpected circumstances arise during implementation. But can those who work with these leaders adjust their actions efficiently and quickly enough without management direction when a decision must be made?

Regretfully, strategies often fail because the people implementing them were unable to adapt. We do not succeed as leaders solely through our own actions – success is produced when the devoted individuals working with us resolve an unforeseen problem to deliver on the promise we made or to help a customer who needed the personal touch. It takes well trained and dedicated problem-solvers throughout an organization to achieve goals.

Since unpredictability is certain, ensuring that your personnel can efficiently implement their assigned tasks, and adapt with urgency if necessary, will contribute more significantly to the success of your business than any other factor.

An organization that values its Purpose at all levels and consistently, robustly acts in accordance with its Principles creates the most sustainable competitive advantage.

How do you ensure that your personnel perform in accordance with your Purpose & Principles?

What are you doing to prepare your people for strategy implementation & adaptation?

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