Why staff don’t understand your business strategy?

Your business strategy is your roadmap for success. It’s meant to steer your business in the right direction and outline for your team what the key objectives are to get there. So it goes without saying that is it probably one of the essential documents in your business. But did you know that only 10% of your employees understand it? And only 40% of your manager? The rest, which makes up 50% of your business, have no idea what it is—scared yet?

So if it is so important why do 50% of your staff not understand it?

Below are some reasons:

1. The big picture is unclear

As leaders we tend to get bogged down in the details. We are not meant to, but we do. As a result we often get so hung up on how something needs to happen, we miss explaining why it needs to happen. We end up becoming so focused on the process, which lets face it can be exhausting at times, that we forget to communicate why we are doing it in the first place. 

2. Poor Time Management

It’s been said that only 9% of leaders are happy with how they allocate their time. The rest are simply juggling too many tasks. Sadly, time-poor leaders spend most of their time on what’s urgent and not necessarily important. And although the strategy is essential, it is so often spoken about once a quarter and then forgotten. All because of time.

3. It’s to complex to understand 

Mark Twain once wrote, “I did not have time to write you a short letter, so I wrote you a long one.” I see this all too often with strategy session I conduct with leaders. They are so busy that they have not had the time to take a step back and work out how to explain it simply. They think that the more they explain it, the clearer it will get. However, If the content is confusing or complex upfront, people will still be confused no matter how much you describe it.

4. Missing Strategy

I confess I have been guilty of this. We share our thinking with our teams but don’t develop it into a simple artefact that can be shared regularly. We think because we have shared a few things here and there that it;’s enough, but it’s not. So when our staff are asked if they have seen our stagey, most ion them will probably say no. Or they can’t remember. 

What can you do about it?

  1. Communicate it clearly from the start Firstly you have to focus on clarity; make it a priority. Make sure that everyone in your organisation gets it. It needs to be clear and straightforward. It’s also essential to explain how the strategy aligns with your mission, vision and values. 
  2. Involve people in the planning The second thing to consider is ownership or buy-in. Your leadership team needs to buy into it to follow through and make it happen; in essence, they need to own it. Very few people and I mean very few, will own something they have not had some part in building. If you don’t have leadership buy-in, your strategy is like a sailboat without wind. It will go nowhere.
  3. Design a roadmap for people to follow Once you have explained it, simply show how you plan to get there; make it a roadmap that people can see, understand and follow. Also, don’t forget that it needs to be clave and simple. It’s no good to have a roadmap that is so confusing you have no idea how to measure success.
  4. Make goals easy and measurable Based on my previous point. It’s no good to have a roadmap if you can’t have milestones to measure the movement. I often see leaders make goals so daunting that their teams get despondent. Make your goals big, but break them up into small measurable goals that are easy to achieve; they are good for motivation and vital to help you stay on track.

How we help:

We create the strategic space for leaders and teams to problem-solve together. It’s dynamite and only takes an hour.

And will seriously help with your staff engagement.

The outcome:

We create your strategy on a page and supply you with a game plan to communicate it to your team.

Time has already taken too much from you. 

Find out more

If you’d like to find out more we offer a 30 min discover call.

Based on the outcome, we problem-solve with you to create a way forward that empowers you and your staff.

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About Garth Jemmett

Garth Jemmett is the founder of We Explain Stuff. He helps business leaders escape complexity by making strategies, processes, products and services easy to understand.

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