Successful leadership of large organizations is best achieved by measuring and managing alignment between the corporate strategy and its execution. Yet for company leaders no amount of travel or motivational sessions can ever be enough to ensure that the strategy is communicated deep into the organization, understood, accepted and executed. CEOs need a proven model to allow them to delegate and decentralize. The management focus must be shifted from structured control to guided interaction.
Managing by strategic pull and operational push achieves this shift. To do so requires a permanent (often real–time) corporate dialogue between the CEO and key executives. From experience the authors of Beyond Control have learned that for this to work consistently over time, a dedicated communication infrastructure is needed. This executive dialogue centre is an Internet–based portal specifically designed as a virtual CEO office to manage the interaction between the CEO and his or her key people.
Introducing an executive dialogue centre allows the CEO to move to the middle of the operation but keep the corporate agenda alive. It also represents the ultimate commitment to a management style of strategic pull and operational push. By creating a well–defined operating arena that enables people to participate and thrive with clear, responsible freedom, the CEO can measure and manage strategic alignment. The result will be an organization that continuously outperforms the expectations of clients and stakeholders.
Part I: Moving Beyond Control: A New Concept.
1. Strategic Alignment: Is a New System Needed?
2. The Corporate Black Box: Understanding History.
3. The Operating Arena: Aligning the Space.
4. Leadership Beyond Control: Creating the Push.
Part II: Creating Alignment: The Continuous Dialogue.
5. The Corporate Dialogue: Activating the Agenda.
6. The Executive Dialogue Centre: Installing the Toolbox.
7. The Fundamentals: A Mindset for Pull and Push.
Part III: Managing Alignment: Leading, Rewarding and Reporting.
8. The Chief Executive Officer: Believer–in–Chief.
9. The Chief Financial Officer: Guarding the Equation.
10. The Human Resource Director: Aligning Talent.
11. The Communications Director: The Coherent, Consistent Storyline.
Appendix I: Gap Analyses.
Appendix II: Campaign Invitations and Protocols.
Appendix III: A Case Study on Measuring ABN AMRO.
Appendix IV: A Case Study on Matching Numico.
Appendix V: A Case Study on Managing Sara Lee/DE.
Appendix VI: How Aligned Is Your Company?