As we draw closer to the end of 2023, organisations are already considering what 2024 will look like from a strategic perspective.

Much like St. Nick, making his list and checking it twice, business leaders are coming together to either revise their current strategy or formulate a new one.

This process is critically important for any organisation as it sets a clear direction over the medium to long term. However, formulating one’s strategy is just the beginning.

No matter how many office walls showcase the strategy, executing it is difficult. That’s why only 44% of business leaders feel that their organisations are proficient in executing their strategic plans. It is more common than not that organisations will experience the strategy-execution gap: the disconnect between a meticulously crafted strategy and achieving strategic results.

So, how can organisations set themselves up to effectively execute their strategy in 2024? In this article, we explore six fundamentals that we believe are essential to strategic success.

1. A Well-Informed, Clearly Defined Strategy

The cornerstone of any successful strategy execution process lies in the quality of the strategy itself. It’s imperative to have a strategy that is well-informed and meticulously documented. This strategy should serve as a guiding document, outlining the long-term ambition, purpose, and specific objectives your organisation aims to achieve. Ensuring the entire team is aligned with this strategy is fundamental to success.

2. Team Alignment and Buy-In

Your strategy document shouldn’t just gather dust on a shelf; it needs to be communicated effectively and understood by every member of your team. We like to say that strategy is a verb – it’s something that you do.

It’s vital that everyone, from top leadership to entry-level employees, understands the strategy and feels personally invested in its success. This buy-in ensures that everyone moves in the same direction and contributes meaningfully to the strategy.

3. Clear Short-Term Strategic Priorities

While long-term strategies are crucial, they can sometimes feel abstract or distant to employees. To set yourselves up for effective strategic execution, breaking down these overarching objectives into tangible, short-term goals is essential.

Organisations should identify between three to five clear strategic priorities that will significantly advance their broader strategy. These priorities provide a roadmap for your team, offering a clear path to follow and specific objectives to pursue. These objectives can then be cascaded into teams throughout the organisation – ultimately ensuring that each team contributes to driving the overarching strategy forward.

Our team uses the OKR (Objectives and Key Results) methodology as a goal-management tool to help clients translate their strategy into shorter-term goals.

4. Regular Progress Monitoring Through Team Meetings

Effective communication is the lifeblood of strategy execution. Communication fosters clarity, transparency and, most importantly trust.

Regular team meetings dedicated to monitoring the progress of strategic priorities are critical. These meetings should be structured, focusing on the performance of your strategic objectives and their associated key results, celebrating successes and highlighting blockers to be solved.

Consistent progress tracking ensures the strategy remains on course and can be adjusted promptly if required.

5. Quarterly Reflection and Adaptation

“We do not learn from our experience. We learn from reflecting on our experience”

– John Dewey

Reflection is often underestimated in the strategy execution process. A quarterly reflection process can be immensely valuable. It’s a time to celebrate successes and acknowledge the team’s efforts, no matter how minor.

Equally important, it’s an opportunity to assess whether the current strategy remains aligned with your organisation’s goals and the ever-evolving business environment. Adjusting the strategy, if necessary, ensures that it remains dynamic and adaptable.

6. Empowering teams to execute effectively

Lastly, teams need to be empowered to drive the strategy execution process. This involves investing in and equipping teams with the skills, capacity and confidence to balance BAU and strategic goals.

Appointing a Strategy Champion, an individual responsible for ensuring the strategy execution process takes place, is also an effective way to drive progress on your strategy.

“Success doesn’t necessarily come from breakthrough innovation, but from flawless execution.”

– Naveen Jain, CEO of

The strategy-execution gap can be a significant challenge for organisations pursuing success. However, it is a challenge that can definitely be overcome.

While these are not the only ways to help organisations execute effectively, they are a good starting point.

By focusing on these six fundamental elements, you can set your organisation up to improve your chances of achieving your strategy and taking your business to new heights.

To learn more about how our team can help you establish these fundamentals, feel free to contact us here.

Megan Joscelyne

Author Megan Joscelyne

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