Are you a chief executive or EO who is finding it hard to make time for strategic work because the day-to-day activity sucks all the oxygen out of your tent?
My friend Larry is the CEO of an investment firm and he coined this term: He told me, “Every time I get out of the office to work on strategy I come back with these great ideas that I’m excited to implement; but as soon as I get back to the office my staff hangs the kryptonite necklace on me. Right away I’m sucked into the vortex of day-to-day tasks and my strategic work doesn’t get done.
Whether you have one direct report or a hundred it’s hard to make time for the activities that move you ahead. One solution is planning your calendar to make it happen. Here’s an idea that works: One afternoon per month, make an appointment out of the office with a board member or senior staffer to work on a specific strategic exercise. Book off the entire afternoon and make the offsite far enough away that you’re not tempted to nip back to the office.
It means that you’ll spend at least a few hours every month working on the future and it helps to build your relationships with key board members and staffers.
Strategic activity is a key element of sustainability. In order to move forward you must work on the business of the organization not just in it.
Written by Erin Roberts, OREA Centre for Leadership Development Guest Blogger