In an article on the importance of morale and engagement, what intrigued me most was a statement on execution that applies to far more than just efforts to improve morale or increase engagement:

“It’s not your plans that are important; it’s whether you can implement them. A good strategy is a fine thing, but it is useless unless you can make it happen. Making it happen depends to a large degree on your people, and therein lies the power of morale.” (emphasis original)

This is the inextricability of strategy from execution. You cannot consider one without the other.

A highlight in HR Magazine outlined the characteristics of good strategic objectives. Two thirds of clarifying questions offered dealt with action – what are you doing or what will be done by others to make the objectives a reality. For example:

“Do employees throughout the company understand how these objectives affect them and how they contribute independently and collectively to the defined objectives?”

It doesn’t matter if you spend mere hours or long weeks crafting strategic objectives that you believe will lead your organisation to the top of your industry if you do not consider how you will communicate those objectives to your employees. Even more important is helping employees understand, through the work, how their efforts and behaviours contribute to achieving those objectives.

The most positive and reinforcing way to do that is through strategic recognition that intentionally acknowledges and praises those efforts that reflect your company values in contribution to achieving your objectives. This makes your objectives real and meaningful for every employee.

What are you doing to make your objectives come alive, from the shop floor to the executive suite?

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