Closing the Gap Between Strategy and Execution

Dates:

NEW PROGRAM
A recent survey of more than 400 global CEOs revealed that the ability to execute strategy was their number one challenge, ahead of innovation, geopolitical instability, and top-line growth. Executives are right to be concerned. At least two-thirds of large organizations struggle to implement their strategies. This new course is designed to help global executives close the gap between strategic intent and results by introducing a systematic framework and hands-on tools to drive execution in their own organizations.

Please note: This program uses a special application form; to access, click on the APPLY TODAY button in the right column of this page, not on the APPLY NOW button in the site navigation. We are no longer accepting applications for the June 2016 session. Registration for the October session ends on September 2, 2016 to provide ample time for the survey process.

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Closing the Gap Between Strategy and Execution
Certificate Track: Strategy and Innovation
Location: Cambridge, Massachusetts
Tuition: $4,500 (excluding accommodations)
Program Days (for certificate credit): 2

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Most leaders rely on a set of implicit beliefs about how to get things done when they try to execute their strategy. Many common assumptions about execution, however, are incomplete at best and dangerous at worst. Despite its importance, execution remains poorly understood—for every ten books on how to formulate a strategy there is only one on how to translate it into effective action. Executives often focus on specific tools, such as the balanced scorecard or management by objectives, to manage risk and drive strategy execution without understanding how these tools interact with one another.


Led by Dr. Donald Sull, a global expert on strategy execution in complex organizations, this new two-day course will help leaders reframe execution so that they can avoid common mistakes and focus on the actions that are most likely to bring results. The course introduces a systemic view of strategy execution based on over a decade of research and field-tested in dozens of corporations around the world.


As part of your participation in this program, you and 30 or more of your colleagues will complete a state-of-the-art survey in advance of the course. The data from this survey will be analyzed to provide you with real-time insights that help pinpoint concrete opportunities to improve your organization’s execution capacity.


Closing the Gap Between Strategy and Execution is:


  • Practical. All of the tools and frameworks introduced in the course have been field-tested with corporations and not-for-profit organizations around the world for over a decade. Every session includes at least one self-diagnostic or template to help you translate the course content into specific actions tailored to you and your organization. The course will provide tools and takeaways to help you translate insights into concrete actions when you return to work.
  • Tailored to operating executives. The program introduces a simple framework to identify the leader’s role in execution, as well as data-driven insights to translate their strategy into measurable results. Participants will learn how to effectively structure and guide discussions that are critical to implementation.
  • Systematic and comprehensive. Execution is explored as an iterative process of risk management, making sense of the current environment, prioritizing activities and investments, securing commitments and ensuring delivery, and making revisions in light of new information.
  • Based in practical research. The course is grounded in Sull’s research, including dozens of structured experiments that involved structured interventions in companies and that quantified the impact on operational and financial results. A state-of-the art survey uses big data to measure and quantify how well organizations execute their strategy and identify specific areas for improvement.
  • Hands on and interactive. The sessions include a mix of case study discussions, interactive lectures, in-class exercises, and opportunities to learn from peers

Participant Testimonial

"A fantastic walk through of the white space between strategy and execution leaving the attendee with insights, thoughts, and techniques to navigate this space effectively by designing strategies for successful execution." - Ravikumar R.

Why So Few Managers Understand Their Company's Strategy

In this video, Donald Sull gets to the source of the problem and offers recommendations for translating strategy into results.

Why Strategy Execution Unravels—and What to Do About It

In this article, Donald Sull debunks 5 of the most pernicious myths about how to implement strategy and replaces them with a more accurate perspective that will help managers effectively execute strategy.

Featured Faculty

Donald Sull
Don Sull is a leading management thinker and has been recognized by The Economist, the Financial Times, and Fortune which named him among the ten new management gurus to know. The Economist listed his theory of active inertia among the ideas that shaped business management over the past century.