I wrote this presentation some time ago. As I review the content, I believe it still holds true today as it did then. Well then, I had 20 reasons!
When I headed Engineering, I remember one of my engineers sharing with me: “My initiative would be just fine, if I did not have people in it!”
I must admit – I chuckled. The reality is most projects and initiatives fail because of the soft-side of the project.
Here are my 30 Reasons Why Strategic Initiatives Fail:
1. Failing to define your ideal future vision in the beginning… that is shared.
2. Failing to clarify and simplify.
3. Developing only superficial vision, mission and values statements. Especially those that end up on a wall or in a folder somewhere. Not lived.
4. Forgetting that people support what they feel they have been apart of.
5. Failing to make tough choices to future directions and obsolete tasks. It must have value and value as defined by the customer. Not new but true even more so today.
6. Neglecting to gauge yourself against the competition.
7. Conducting only long-range financial forecasting.
8. Poor information on social, competitive, economic, political, technical, industry and customer influences – this should be a continuous analysis not an event. Just plain aversion or openness to new ideas.
9. Using confusing terminology.
10. Using confusing language.
11. Failing to integrate planning at all levels.
12. Conducting “business as usual” after strategically planning otherwise.
13. Commitment to the plan.
14. Communicating the plan.
15. Having a plan. Now there’s a concept
16. Recognizing that it is a “living plan”.
17. Lack of focus.
18. Inconsistent decisions
19. Failing to design/ complete an effective (measured) implementation process.
20. No management of implementation and process of change.
21. Difficultly in keeping up momentum during the implementation.
23. Low commitment to the final products of the strategic plan.
24. Failure to provide the needed resources (financial and personnel) to implement.
25. Differing directions/priorities among business/organizational units
26. Conflict and politics.
27. Lack of Sponsorship.
28. Lack of Leadership.
29. Lack of interpersonal skills among top management working as a “team”.
30. The actual implementation.
Many of the above are people-related and can been seen as symptoms of resistance. I would also like to state that these reasons are not just employee-related. It starts at the top. Model the model leaders.
I am intrigued if you have experienced any of the above or other reasons!
Stay the course and be successful.
Cartoon used with the permission of Cartoonist; Photo by Funchye
- Strategic Initiatives | Are You Ready to Implement? (leadingstrategicinitiatives.wordpress.com)
- The Top 4 Reasons Many Businesses Don’t Implement their Strategic Plan (prweb.com)