In some well known findings, researchers at Harvard Business School determined that, on average, 95% of a company’s employees are unfamiliar with its strategy. A primary cause: executive leadership teams set objectives in high-level, non-technical terms, while other teams focus on the technical details of execution.
When it comes to product development, this disconnect — between “strategy formulation and strategy execution” — can cause serious problems. Delayed releases. Cost overruns. Idle development resources. And, in the worst case, wholly failed products. As Robert Kaplan and David Norton of Harvard note simply:
“If the employees who are closest to customers and who operate processes that create value are unaware of the strategy, they surely cannot help the organization implement it effectively.”
We couldn’t agree more.
Today we’re excited to announce the availability of Initiatives, a new element in Wizeline designed to help companies overcome the “strategy disconnect” that befalls many companies. Initiatives in Wizeline offer an effective way for teams to:
- Align around important business objectives;
- Communicate high-level strategy; and
- Track progress against the plan
Using initiatives, teams are able to create organization-wide objectives that extend across all products, releases and teams within Wizeline. You can invite colleagues to provide data and feedback, and help finalize plans. You can specify context and set specific goals to help communicate to your entire org the ‘why’ behind the strategy. And, once the plan is finalized, you can connect projects and features to your initiative so you can track progress at teams begin to execute.
Initiatives are available to Wizeline Pro and Enterprise customers. Have a look at the video above and, as always, let us know if you have questions or feedback.