You repeatedly articulate goals and point workers in the right direction. They know what’s at stake and they understand your vision. They just don’t know what to do next.
Beware of communicating on a macro level (“We’re aiming for best-of-breed product superiority”) without also guiding employees on how to get it done. Devise multistep processes that people can follow to carry out the directives you’ve set.
If you want your team to develop product enhancements, for example, number each step they need to take. These steps might include drafting a list of possible new features, conducting a cost-benefit analysis on each item, selecting the three most promising ideas and staging tests or designing product samples to assess viability.
Reward employees who implement each step in rapid succession. Don’t indulge them if they want to talk endlessly about how they might proceed.
Offer wide arms of acceptance for individuals who make mistakes. That’s a cost of speedy execution. As long as you signal a willingness to tolerate well-intentioned errors, workers won’t fear the consequences of shifting from talk to action.