The Kybernan Steering Wheel

The 9 Strategic Decisions Every Business Leader Should Make

The Key Strategic Decisions That Drive Growth Are Often Left Unasked

One of the biggest mistakes that can arise from management discussions is assumption.  It can be all too easy for business leaders to operate under the illusion that, after years of collaboration, there is an inherent, collective understanding of business choices across the executive team.  

This problem can be even more troublesome as decision trickle their way down to the grassroots of an organisation.  Senior leaders might assume that the team beneath them has a clear understanding of the decision that executive teams make, while more junior colleagues may find themselves simply waiting for direction.  This creates an echo chamber where everyone thinks they are on the same page.

Ask Yourself:

Use these questions to see what shape your organisation is in when it comes to making decisions. Give yourself a mark for each:

1. Does your organisation know what it is, why it exists?

2.  Can you describe your business model? 

3.  Do you have a current list of measurable objectives and priorities for your enterprise?

4.  Are measures of positive habits of your enterprise known to all?

5.  Can you explain what the building blocks are of your customer value?

6.  Do you know who your customers are and how you want them to think or act differently?

7.  Do you know the best way to reach your audience and persuade prospects to become customers?

8.  Do you understand the experiences of your customers, workforce, and other stakeholders, to make informed decisions on operating attitudes and behaviours—so your workforce acts in the right way, is engaged, healthy, inclusive, adaptive, motivated, inventive and aligned to the achievement of corporate not departmental goals?

9.  Can you describe your organisational design?  Is it agile, i.e., can you adapt safeguards, resources, policies, processes, systems and data etc.  to rapidly re-align your organisational design?

10.  Have you worked out how to amplify your business with a unique brand signature that reflects your brand essence in imagery?

If you’ve counted up 5 points or less, you REALLY should implement this model.  Remember, your competitors probably already have—or will.

The Key Strategic Decisions That Drive Growth Are Often Left Unasked

Peter Drucker, arguably the founder of modern day management consulting as a discipline, would ask five questions to get his head around what an enterprise was all about.  

These are they:

1.  What is your mission? (Goal/Purpose)

2.  Who is your customer? (Audience)

3.  What does your customer value? (Value)

4.  What results do you seek? (Rewards)

5.  What is your plan? (Strategy/Objectives)

These are good questions. Nothing at all wrong with them. But they’re not enough to frame your decision making for an enterprise operating in the modern world. 

This is why:
  1. Business wealth and health is valued in completely different terms to once it was, when the physical assets of a balance sheet and a full order book was enough to put a number on the value of a business.
  2. We live in an era where, in the balance of supply and demand, the bigger challenge is supply.  Global digital competition has increased the pace and dynamics of global competition, to the point that business models are adapting faster, brands struggle to stand out more than they ever have, and persuading people to want what you make is more challenging than it’s ever been.
  3. Third-party contributions, supply-chains and strategic procurement have increased in their importance to bring the agility that organisations need to adapt to change.  
  4. People, their interests, preferences, health and passions are MUCH more important in the determination of enterprise growth and success.  People aren’t cogs in an organisational machine anymore.  
  5. There is a battle going on in organisations today between the criticality of data analysis and the importance of creative innovation.  Setting this balance is the key to long-term survival, and often swings the balance of competition to organisations that get it right.

What it all boils down to is this—if you are at the helm of a successful modern-day business, or hope to be—when setting out your strategic decision-making, you will have to work much harder than making just five decisions!

Your Strategy Steering Wheel

About Kybernan

Kybernan is the original Greek term from which the modern term Governance is taken.  It means ‘To Steer.’ 

Today, governance is something often seen to occur after processes have been run and things happen.  

Increasingly, industry regulators expect organisations to operate well ‘by design’.  This means adopting good practise in your business-as-usual activities , rather than picking up the pieces when things go wrong.  

If I example this, imagine a large ocean liner looking to come into a small port on a Mediterranean island.  No doubt, the liner will have an experienced captain at the helm— but would this person choose to ignore the offer of a local port pilot to steer them into a safe berth under the protection of the harbour wall from the elements?  

A captain is always responsible and accountable for their vessel.  Yet, ultimately, all professionals (including Captains) rely on expert ‘pilots’ to navigate through uncharted waters.  Whilst people who establish businesses are rarely without experience, charting a course to growth is not without its own white rapids, gale force storms, and Bermuda triangles! 

The Kybernan Steering Wheel is a business alignment for growth system we’ve developed by Tomlin&Co.  

The Tomlin&Co. Kybernan Steering Wheel

Want to Know More?  Why Not Read the Book?

This book is about decisions—the important ones you need to make if you want your business to succeed.  It was Abraham Lincoln who said: “if I had eight hours to chop down a tree, I’d spend the first six hours sharpening my axe.’  Fail to make the decisions we cover in this book, ignore their importance, and your business could find itself in a perpetual ‘groundhog day loop.’   

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