Tuesday, February 12, 2013

The Need For Clarity And Alignment

Right now, many people in leadership positions are still trying to discern what are the best choices to make in 2013, especially given all the challenges happening at the federal and state levels of government. Most read the tea leaves about what it all means for the future and come up confused and frustrated. To say we live in a time period of strategic ambiguity is an understatement. In many companies, executives share with me that they believe we live in a time period of strategic avoidance and strategic ambivalence.

However, when I step back from the pressing issues that cross my path and listen deeply into what is being shared with me about strategy and strategic choices, I believe we are heading into another round of significant challenges. Former CEO of Intel, Andy Grove called these points a “strategic inflection point”, i.e a time when change in the competitive environment requires a company to make a major adaptation to new circumstances, or risk extinction. In short, he is saying we are approaching a change or die scenario. 

Yet, the response in some executive suites is to act like turtles with their heads and limbs pulled inside their corporate shells. They have chosen a path of taking less and less risks, and instead focused on control, compliance and compensation rather than strategy, talent and execution.

But the best companies I know are not falling into this trap and are instead focusing on two key concepts, namely alignment and clarity. Patrick Lencioni in his book, The Advantage: Why Organizational Health Trumps Everything Else in Business (Jossey-Bass, 2012) writes “Within the context of making an organization healthy, alignment is about creating so much clarity that there is as little room as possible for confusion, disorder, and infighting to set in. Of course, the responsibility for creating that clarity lies squarely with the leadership team.”

However, many senior leadership teams struggle with creating alignment and clarity. Therefore, I have chosen creating organizational clarity to be the central theme of the Spring 2013 From Vision to Action Executive Roundtable on April 11-12, 2013.  Here is the agenda for your review:

Thursday: April 11, 2013

- 8:30 am - Registration
- 9:00 am - 10:15 am - The Prerequisites For Organizational Clarity
- 10:15 am - 10:30 am - Break
- 10:30 am - 12:00 pm - Creating, Communicating & Cascading Clarity
- 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm - Lunch and Networking 
- 1:30 pm - 2:45 pm - Reinforcing Clarity Through Systems
- 2:45 pm - 3:00 pm - Break
- 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm - Managing Clarity & Performance
- 4:30 pm - Adjourn

Friday: April 12, 2013

- 9:00 am - 10:15 am - Finding & Creating Personal Clarity
- 10:15 am - 10:30 am - Break 
- 10:30 am - 12:00 pm - Integration and Application
- 12:00 pm - Adjourn

We will be meeting at the Courtyard by Marriott in West Des Moines - Clive, Iowa. Here is a link to this location: http://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/dsmch-courtyard-des-moines-west-clive/

If you and members of your team want to attend, then here is a link to the registration form: http://www.chartyourpath.com/pdf/2013-From-Vision-To-Action-Exec-Roundtable-Regist.pdf

In a year where we need to be achieving focus and alignment throughout the entire organization, now is the time to sign up and participate in the Spring 2013 From Vision to Action Executive Roundtable. It will help you and your organization to be well prepared for the future.

Geery Howe, M.A. Consultant, Executive Coach, Trainer in Leadership, Strategic Planning and Organizational Change Morning Star Associates 319 - 643 - 2257

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