Help Employees understand Your company’s strategy by giving them many ways to access the information, providing a comprehensive guide to what will change and delivering messages that inspire them to be part of it, writes leadership coach David Lancefield. “You’ll know it’s resonating when stakeholders start to use the same language, and, most importantly, start making their own choices about where to focus and how to work differently,” Lancefield writes.
Most people can’t recall the strategy of the organization they work for. Even the executives and managers responsible for strategy struggle, with one study reporting that only 28% of them could list three strategic priorities.
It’s not surprising. Many organizations don’t have a strategy. The few that do find it hard to communicate effectively, as it requires engaging with a wide range of stakeholders in different situations. They find it easier and less risky to issue lofty purpose statements, describe big goals, launch initiatives, or publish fixed plans instead.
Communicating strategy clearly increases the chances of an organization “winning” by helping people decide where to focus their attention, energy, resources, and capabilities. Unclear communication results in wasted effort from lack of alignment and confusion, which leads to inertia.
If you’re embarking on communicating your organization’s strategy, here are five ways to do it clearly.
Communications sometimes focus on one aspect of strategy to the detriment of others. For example, they lay out how to beat the competition but forget to address how best to serve customers. Or they describe an exciting vision but leave out important details of how the organization will deliver on it. They outline the trends, dynamics, and disruptions but fail to clearly articulate the choices they’ve made to address them.
The same goes for the audience. Executives prioritize communicating with employees and investors and then forget to engage with wider stakeholders, such as regulators or community groups, until they raise questions or objections.