Tag Archives: Strategy communication

Actual Results From Focusing On Strategy

This year we saw actual positive results from focusing on our strategy.

For the first time in 3 years we have seen an increase in the number of countries with new spiritual movements launched. This is the outcome from our Mission, and directly leads us towards our Vision. I do not believe that this has happened by accident, but that it is the result of 3 years of focus on one thing by senior leadership across about 170 countries.

Key lessons I learned from this success:

  • Focus on one thing.
  • For years and years.
  • Don’t change the focus, and don’t change the rules. People can’t keep up with our ability to create change.
  • Keep it simple – both the strategy, and the process for turning the strategy into something that people can execute day to day.
  • Be consistent in messaging world-wide.
  • Review progress frequently (we aimed at bi-weekly, but we probably ended up with monthly).
  • Don’t allow your ability to think of new things to do distract you from the most important one thing.
  • Don’t let up. I had an old boss who used to say “Don’t let them grind you down!”, although he used an expletive before the object of the sentiment to reinforce the point.
  • Public accountability keeps even independent minded people focused on group goals.

I have been writing this blog now for nearly 2 years as I have been trying to figure out how to help 16,000 people spread across nearly 170 countries lead strategically. I hope that the fact that we have seen some success encourages you to stick to the strategy and use the strategic planning process to keep focused on the long term goal.

Communicating Your Strategy

I was with our Latin America director last week. He and his team have a strategy. So now what?

One of the biggest reasons for having a strategy is so that the staff working with you know what to do every day. They are only going to know the new strategy if it is communicated to them.

The guys on Madison Avenue (the center of the US advertising industry) know that someone has to receive a message 7 times before they internalize it. If it takes 6 repetitions to remember what brand of toothpaste to buy, then it will take at least that for someone to understand the strategy of your organization so that all their decisions are based upon it.

The strategy can be communicated in the following ways at different times:

  • E-mails
  • References to the strategy in EVERY presentation
  • Video summary on YouTube / Vimeo with link distributed to all staff
  • Articles in in-house newsletters
  • Roadshow with live presentations
  • Measurement of a key metric of the strategy
  • Cascading e-mail, with group discussions at all levels
  • Incentives / competitions
  • Internal social media articles and discussions

This communication will need to come from different people so that the staff recognizes that it is not just your hobby horse. The strategy can be communicated by:

  • the CEO
  • Department / Division heads
  • Success stories from the field staff
  • Peer groups on internal message boards / social media sites

One of the best books that I have read on the importance of this subject is Simple Church. Check it out.