About 60% of strategies fail in execution. When this happens the company loses out in building competitive advantage. Many strategies are either too complicated, poorly communicated, and/or have unclear goals, making them hard to execute and likely to underperform. While 75% of Fortune 500 companies use a big consulting firm every year to help them develop and implement strategy, companies with revenues from $100MM to $500MM have traditionally not done so.
Whether one is getting ready to sell a company or its shares, acquire or merge with another company, or raise capital, strategy ought to be the starting point. Business owners need to make sure that the business’s strategy is current, realistic, and executable. Great strategy paired with strong execution drives the health of a business.
For acquirers, we focus on strategy because failures in strategy can easily result in expensive failed mergers or acquisitions. Companies waste resources on deals that never truly fit with the company. On the other hand, if the company had clarity about its strategic vision and execution, it would be more selective in how it applies M&A in its strategy to grow. Many mistakenly allow M&A to become strategy, which is a tell-tale sign that the company first needs to improve on its overall strategy. M&A is dangerous if you lack good strategy. Watermark helps clients explore how improving their strategy might be a first step towards improving the pace of revenue and profitability growth.
StrategyMap© has seven key elements:
- Market Opportunity – which opportunities will most likely maximize the value of the company and financial return for shareholders?
- Vision – do you know where you want to go in the next five years?
- Roadmap – how do you plan to get there?
- Business Model – what business model will differentiate from your competitors? How will you create, sell, and deliver your products in such a way that creates unique customer experiences?
- Execution – How will you develop a detailed launch plan of tasks and owners that sets the strategy into motion?
- Leadership – What key competencies and chemistry amongst the leadership team will be necessary to execute the strategy?
- Culture – If you don’t have the right strategy/culture fit, the strategy will underperform.
Our strategy consulting product is called StrategyMap©. StrategyMap© is a rapid, no-frills deep-dive into the essential components that will make a strategy executable. The process starts with focusing on the right opportunities to maximize shareholder value and ends with identifying the corporate culture that the company needs to execute the plan. An executable strategy must be clear, complete, concise, and compelling. This is the goal of the StrategyMap©.