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Why your team needs the big picture

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in Leaders & Managers,Management Training

People who don’t understand strategy and the big picture can end up working hard on the wrong things, making poor decisions or even quitting out of frustration.

Do your people “get it”?

To find out, test your team’s ability to discuss the big picture. For example, ask each person the same five questions about strategy to see if their answers line up with yours:

  1. Who are the customers or customer segments we serve, listed in priority order?
  2. What are the services we provide now and which ones, if any, need to change as we implement the current strategy?
  3. What is our value proposition and how does it set us apart and give us an edge in the marketplace?
  4. Which environmental trends/issues (such as market, economic, societal, political or environmental) are important to our strategy?
  5. What are three things your division is doing (and/or doing differently) to support the strategy?

Each question gets at the intent behind the strategy. There are right answers and wrong ones. And the answers change as strategy changes.

Good people could be working really hard on the wrong thing if their understanding of these questions is off base. Your job, as a leader, is to ensure that everyone in your reporting structure knows the answers.

— Adapted from The Executive Guide to High-Impact Talent Management, Steve Trautman.

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