Companies fail to turn strategy into action

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The Independent Online
Over three-quarters of companies around the world set out clear strategic plans, but nearly half admit that they are bad at putting them into action, according to research published today.

Moreover, the study Strategy into Action, by management consultancy Quest Worldwide, finds that many plans lack vision, with strategies tending to be driven by demands from shareholders or the board. The focus is usually on financial targets.

Two-thirds of the companies surveyed said they achieved these predominantly financial targets, though they made less comment on their success with cultural, operational and market or customer issues.

One of the difficulties identified by Quest was that strategy statements sometimes lacked focus and set too many priorities with inappropriate timescales.

Another was the lack of commitment at all levels of the workforce resulting from strategies being developed at the highest levels.