Why Execution is Key for Business Strategies

Tor Idhammar President & CEO, IDCON, INC., IDCON INC

Business strategies developed by companies are often useless. A business strategy is basically a plan for what the company should focus on in the future. It is a promise and guideline to steer a company in the right direction. It’s not too different from your personal New Year’s resolution.

Most people’s New Year’s resolutions include things such as losing weight, exercising more, drinking less and improving their marriage in some form. The universal formula for change in any personal-improvement book or business book is to:

  1. Understand what to do
  2. Understand how to do it
  3. Execute

Let us compare a business strategy with our beloved New Year’s resolution. We know what the problem is, right? We are fat, unhappy, stressed, whatever. We usually know how to improve (drink less, exercise, spend time with the wife), but we fail to execute.

The hard truth is that we try a little. We soon realize it is harder to improve than we thought, and we quit. Right? However, the day we get a heart attack, I think most people get a completely new attitude toward exercising, smoking and stress, at least for a while. Of course, there are different reactions. Some people just roll over and wait for the truck to hit, while others start making improvements.

Our economic crisis is like a heart attack. Some companies grease their elbows and use the situation to become meaner and leaner. Some are in too bad of shape in order to survive. Others give up. Which company are you?

This is the time to do the things you didn’t have time to do before because you were busy making widgets or tons. Take the opportunity to improve your preventive maintenance tasks, revise your planning and scheduling routines, work on your root-cause analysis activities, clean up your storeroom and build that technical database you always cried about not having. Execute!

Just understanding or thinking about good ideas doesn’t get you or your plant/mill/mine anywhere.

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