One of the most frustrating and futile exercises throughout the business world is attempting to implement a strategic plan without total management support. All of the thought put into planning and all of the work done through performance management focused on employees cannot replace this essential facet of your organization’s strategy: 100% buy in from those at the top.
But how do you ensure something so vital when by definition top management is, well, at the top? We’ve rounded up three different articles from different disciplines that attempt to tackle the issue.
From a Process-Change Management Perspective:
- Show benefits: If you can demonstrate how the approach will help the organization and the kind of benefits you can obtain, then you will catch the attention of your Senior Managers…
- Explain the concept and how to ensure success: If you understand the concepts, then you have the knowledge to explain how [your planning process] can benefit a company and how to set up for success…
- Understand where it can help: Identifying where to run your projects is vital in any deployment and even more so in the early stages. You must pick projects which are not so easy that any attention would have solved them, or projects which are so big it would be like solving world hunger…
- Understand what motivates your Managers: If you understand the motivations of your management team then you will know what buttons to press to get the concepts accepted… more at ezinearticles
From a Communications Management Perspective:
With a firm eye on the bottom line, top management wants to see financial benefits. Yes, investment is required upfront, but in the not-so-long term, there should be savings as marketing materials are produced faster and more consistently. A challenge for communications and marketing managers is to document results and, wherever possible, show the numbers… more at Eye for Image
From a Marketing Pitch Perspective:
Be calm. Don’t try to “sell” your idea. Stick to discussing the opportunity in a calm, rational way and let the conversation flow. If your managers feel they are being sold an idea, their BS meter may go off. This could really change the direction of the discussion… more at Marketing Inspiration
You may have to try different approaches and borrow from what has worked in other organizations or disciplines, but don’t overlook this essential aspect to your plan- and don’t give up!