Making Sure Front-Line Workers Execute Strategy
According to the Harvard Business Review, even the most brilliant strategy is worth nothing if it isn't executed well, especially by your front line — the employees who interact daily with your customers. Unfortunately, these employees are regularly asked to execute strategies that others developed and that they may not understand, never mind feel committed or connected to. In fact, according to Robert Kaplan and David Norton, the founders of the Balanced Scorecard, only 5% of employees understand their company's strategy. This makes successful execution nearly impossible. So how can you help frontline employees not only understand but get behind your company's strategy?
1. Communicate and Clarify
If employees are involved in creating the strategy, they are already bought into it, making execution both easier and smoother. When that's not possible, however, the strategy needs to be communicated across the organization.
2. Don't Dictate How
Leaders and managers can set the vision and targets but they shouldn't dictate how employees achieve them. More specificity may make frontline employees' jobs easier, but it eliminates their need to think and diminishes their sense of ownership.
3. Use Values to Guide Execution Decisions
Since you aren't telling your frontline employees exactly what to do, you need to rely on your company's values to help drive their decisions and actions.
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