April 26, 2012
I am uncompromising on the importance of EXECUTION in determining the success of an organization. Get your plan just about right, execute it flawlessly and you will win. No question about it.
So who owns execution? Generally since many functions share in the responsibility to execute the plan it rests with an executive team. But it needs an owner. It needs single finger accountability to ensure that it gets done. Shared responsibility, however noble, is simply not up to the task.
Enter the Strategy Hawk.
This is a role deserving of a person with superior currency in your organization; someone who is respected and viewed as a ‘go to person’ when results are expected. Tenacity perseverance, passion and energy are all apt descriptors of the Strategy Hawk.
This person is handed the reins to ensure that your Strategic Game Plan is executed to the ‘letter of the law’. He or she is empowered (generally by the Chief Executive) to do whatever it takes to see that the plan is executed as committed to by all stakeholders.
The job description of the Hawk looks like this:
- Follow up on commitments
- Interrogations on negative variances
- Reporting on status of plan execution to executive
- Probing to understand why commitments are missed
- Encouraging/cajoling/nurturing people on to fulfill their obligations to the plan
Not a role for the faint-of-heart!
Strategies get executed because there is someone with fire in the belly who is constantly in the faces of the deliverers. It doesn’t happen naturally. People are too busy?
Accept this reality and appoint your hawk to ensure your strategy gets executed. Dedicate your hawk to the task. Give them no other responsibilities. Pay them only on how effectively they perform this role and achieve plan progress. Pay them handsomely when they succeed. Honour them among their peers.