Article Tags : implementing ideas . Leadership . turn an idea into a business
Your company has a great idea. You also have a problem called the execution gap. It is a perceived gap between your company’s strategies and expectations and its ability to meet those goals and put ideas into action.
Life and business are both complex, it is far more difficult than it might seem at first glance to close this gap. An older survey from 2007 found that 49% of business leaders perceived a gap between strategy and execution; 64% lacked confidence in their company’s ability to narrow it.
There are some simple tips – or rules – for closing this perceived gap.
Step 1. Define Your Desired End Result Clearly
Many times going from idea to implementation is just a lack of understandable, defined vision and goals. If you cannot define what you want accomplished, you can hardly expect others to understand your strategy and participate in your adventures with any level of meaningful contribution. Fuzzy definitions equals fuzzy results – if any at all. Define your expectations clearly and the better it will allow employees to grasp what they’re supposed to be working toward. Otherwise your emplouyess will end up stumbling around in the dark, guessing what you really want instead of accomplishing it. A big difference.
Step 2. Spell Out Clearly the “Why”
You must be able to communicate clearly to your employees what you want done and, more importantly, why you want to do it. Your employees are more likely to disappoint you if they don’t understand your expectations.
Furthermore, your employees gain a deeper understanding of how their knowledge and work will be a contribution to the larger whole. They feel like actively engaged participants in a meaningful enterprise instead feeling isolated.
Step 3. Acquire Necessary Knowledge and Acknowledge Ignorance
You must honestly assess if you have the necessary working knowledge for managing the project. There are educational resources to make up for any shortcomings (You cannot know everything and to pretend otherwise is egotistical folly;go and hire good people if you are not the best fit to manage).
Step 4. Create The Best Leadership Team
For a great executive team to collaboratively develop a strategy requires that someone initiates it and determines who to invite. That’s why I don’t think this is the first step. Usually it begins with an idea from the initiator as its starting point regardless where it goes from there.
Do not pick YES-people. Aim to build a strategic team that can pick apart your strategies from all angles. Your team should be able to poke holes in your ideas as you debate and deliberate together. Finding weak spots prior to implementation will help close the execution gap.
Step 5. Monitor Progress Closely – Not Remotely
Implementing any strategy involves projects and programs that will be required at the meetings. How many of us have had meetings end with task assignments that are never accomplished on the agreed time line. If you intend to close the execution gap, you and your executive team must make it chrystal clear to the project leaders this practice is not acceptable. They are expected to perform and be held accountable for their results.
No micro managing though – people need to be given a certain latitude to be productive. Find the balance of exercising reasonable accountability while allowing enough breathing room for employees to do their best work. Micro managing kills any pleasure for working.
Look out for the next 5 tips in 10 Tips On How To Turn Ideas Into Execution – Part 2!
BONUS TIP: Join us at the 7 Steps to Launch Conference on Feb 11, 12 & 13 2011 in Las Vegas to learn more.