Review of Strategic Speed

Strategic Speed

Review of Strategic Speed

Highlights by David Willden

Only 30% of Initiatives Succeed

Review of Strategic Speed

Only 30 percent of strategic initiatives are successfully executed. Most CEOs view the process as too slow. Consider that:

  • 80% of major system investments don’t deliver intended impact
  • 70% of reengineering initiatives fail
  • 70% of business critical efforts fail to achieve expected results
  • 67-80% of TQM programs do not create desired results

If we can’t have confidence in our ability to strategize, plan and execute, what do we have? What’s going on? And how can you accelerate execution in your company?



Research to Find the Causes and Solutions

Three seasoned executives and consultants conducted major research on how executives accelerate and sustain the execution of strategies. The research included:

  • A review of hundreds of examples of outstanding and poor execution
  • Eighteen in-depth case studies of organizations that executed their strategies substantially faster than the average
  • An international survey of 343 senior executives to determine what factors contributed to outstanding and poor execution

Strategy Speed is a Key To Success

“Our research at The Forum Corporation shows a strong link between speed and business results. Faster companies enjoy an average of 40 percent higher sales growth and 52 percent higher operating profit growth than slower companies.”

Are we Focused on the Right Improvement Priorities?

  • “The big mistake is to pursue speed by manipulating processes, systems, and technologies in a bid to become more efficient. This approach, while helpful to a degree, will get you only so far. Focus on efficiency alone does not create speed.”
  • “In slower companies, the emphasis is on efficiency, keeping up the pace, sticking with the known, staying focused on one’s own work, and not worrying too much about alignment.
  • “Process is something you have to pay attention to in a large company, but it’s something you need to simplify as much as possible.”
  • “It’s easy to see how important the people issues are to achieving speed in knowledge work environments, which are essentially complex, collaborative, and relationship-oriented rather than oriented toward routine tasks. Jobs that focus on “tacit” interactions (those that require a high level of judgment and applied knowledge), as opposed to “transaction” interactions, not make up 25 to 50 percent of jobs in developed nations.”

New Metrics for Measure Speed

Running around in a frenzy will just make things worse. Great athletes learn to focus and relax. Get the right timeline measures in place.

What Can Leaders Do Turn Things Around?

“The surprising truth is that you achieve strategic speed by focusing on people. Many executives look at people as the problem. The assumption is that people slow things down. They bring up issues, they have emotions, questions, quirks and complaints.”

Review of Strategic Speed

Review of Strategic Speed