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Economy heroes strategy sprint


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Strategy Execution is a lot like fitness. The company, especially the CEO and leadership team, can get "strategically fit" in order to break through second stage of growth and scale their business. CEOs/Founders and their leadership teams can establish an Execution Habit to prioritize, deploy their resources effectively, and close their Execution Gap.

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Economy heroes strategy sprint

  1. 1. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint1 The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint 1 2 53 64 7 Create an Execution Habit and Win Your Race this Year
  2. 2. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint2 Brent Sapp is a Strategic Advisor, Product Innovator, Author, Entrepreneur Activist, and Founder of the Economy Heroes movement. His experience spans multiple industries including Health Care, Education and Software. He’s worked with startups, mid-market companies, and Fortune the 500 to help C.E.O.s and their teams to break through the second stage of growth. His company ( equips CEOs to make team alignment and accountability a routine so that they can create a sustainable Execution Habit. He helps CEOs and Founders transition through second stage growth where over 90% of companies fail. He has over 500 companies under his belt to verify that the right strategy made simple and measurable gets executed. Brent Sapp
  3. 3. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint3 In 2004 Carl Daikeler, CEO of Beachbody, did something extraordinary. He launched a revolution in the world of exercise by removing the vehicle Power 90 Extreme, or “P90X”. Carl’s home exercise regimen, via DVD, included interval training, weight training, martial arts, yoga, and calisthenics; all supported by a comprehensive nutrition plan. The P90X workouts were scheduled on a 3 month calendar. The DVD sessions included a built-in personal trainer, legendary exercise guru Tony Horton, and several other real-life participants to provide a visual example and a pace to follow during the workouts. P90X enabled both athletes and not-so-athletic across America and around the world to develop something they didn’t have before: an Exercise Habit.
  4. 4. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint4 The program found it’s initial audience with college students but quickly spread to expanding age groups, including mine. I was 52 when my son invited me to engage with P90X. I tried other forms of exercise and diet, but struggled to develop a routine. I couldn’t overcome my lack of exercise training or my own inability to focus on the right things in the time available. I was too busy to make exercise and disciplined nutrition habitual enough to see results. I was also sick of carrying a 30 pound tire around my middle. I was stuck. Finally I reached the point where I was unwilling to postpone my race to do and do it when he told me to do it, for 90 days. That was four years ago. Today I’m 30 lbs lighter I and still use P90X at least 3 times per week. More important, I’ve developed an effective Exercise Habit. through second stage of growth and scale their business. CEOs/Founders and their leadership teams can establish an Execution Habit to prioritize, deploy their resources effectively, and close their Execution Gap.
  5. 5. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint5 I’m the CEO of a software company. We’ve generated data from over 600 emerging growth companies that have used our software. We add that data to the experience of over 1000 advisors who years. We’re convinced that sustainable Execution is the biggest hurdle these companies must clear in order to break through the granite barrier of second stage. We need a different type of revolution today, this time for Entrepreneurs of companies between 20 - t300 employees. We call these individuals Economy Heroes (@economyheroes, because they take the risks that change our lives and generate over 85% of the jobs in this country. Economy Heroes effectively lead their teams to prioritize and execute effectively so that they can maintain growth and scale. There are over 600,000 companies in this segment. Please read the Economy Heroes Manifesto at the end of this eBook.
  6. 6. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint6 The leadership of most emerging growth companies try to execute based on their previous level of activity. They count on “wishes” some point, however, the levers that previously generated growth stop working. The CEOs and core teams get trapped in the tyranny of the urgent. Growth stalls and the most important priorities for the business fall by the wayside. A company’s leadership team requires a different level of thinking to execute effectively and transition their business from adolescence to adulthood. Doug Tatum describes in his best-selling book, No Man’s Land, that all growing companies reach a stage where they become too big to be small and too small to be big. These companies often get stuck in the second stage of growth due to the crtical upgrades to break through No Man’s Land. A sustainable Execution Habit frees CEOs to spend the majority of their time doing what they do best. An Execution Habit prevents companies from getting stuck and losing ground in No Man’s Land. “Success is actually a short race; a sprint fueled by discipline just long enough for habit to kick in and take over.” - Gary Keller, The ONE Thing
  7. 7. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint7 The keys to sustained strategy execution are simplicity and predictability. Best selling author and CEO predictability.” This 60 Day Strategy Sprint is a simple, but powerful process quickly builds your inner circle’s things done now - together. EXECUTION SIMPLICITY
  8. 8. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint8 1 2 5 3 6 4 7 THERE ARE 7 STEPS in the strategy sprint to develop your execution habit
  9. 9. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint9 Get Radically Objective About the Business 1 2 5 3 6 4 7
  10. 10. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint10 Jim Collins described a paradigm in his landmark book, Good to Great, that all successful leaders must embrace on their journey to sustainable growth. He called it the “Stockdale Paradox” in reference to the experiences of the highest ranking POW in the Vietnam War, Admiral William ability to maintain unwavering faith that you can and will time have the discipline to confront the most brutal facts of your current reality, whatever they might be.”
  11. 11. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint11 • Can all members of my leadership team (or inner circle) clearly articulate the same clear and concise Value Proposition for our company? customer segments? • Can we quantify the cost to acquire a new customer? • Am I (the CEO) free to do what I do best? • Are the right people in the right key leadership positions? • Do the existing leaders have success in the same role with a company at least twice our company’s size? • Are the company’s top 3 priorities clear and easy to translate into action? • Does my inner circle have a clear plan for sustainable growth? • Can my entire inner circle clearly articulate the company’s strategy? • Does my entire inner circle agree with the company’s strategy? • Is everyone in my company, especially my inner circle, held accountable to performance? • Do we have a culture of accountability vs. loyalty? formance on new initiatves? • Will my company make money at higher volumes? You, and your inner circle, need to agree on what you believe about the No Man’s Land issues. You and your team can get radically objective and embrace the No Man’s Land brutal facts about your company. ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS ABOUT YOUR BUSINESS:
  12. 12. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint12 • Does my company have an economic model that accurately forecasts end of the month? • Does my company’s economic model effectively estimate future performance based on current decisions? • Does my company have adequate cash to operate the business and fund future growth? that risk(s)? • Do the Founders of my company have an exit strategy? • Does the Founders of my company agree on a time frame to exit? Once you and your inner circle possess a clear picture of your company’s current condition on these critical second-stage issues, you are ready for the second step in your Execution Habit. 2
  13. 13. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint13 Get Your Team in Sync1 2 5 3 6 4 7
  14. 14. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint14 The next steps in the Strategy Sprint involve creating an execution plan for current year. Team misalignment is the biggest obstacle to strategy execution. We’ve documented that 92% of CEOs believe their teams agree with and can clearly communicate their strategy; while 2% of leadership teams can list the same priorities. Teams out of sync on strategy waste time, energy and resources as the individual members plow ahead on their interpretation of the company strategy without a united focus. However, we’ve seen that teams aligned and focused on accomplishing the same PRIMARY Goal and the top priorities generate at least a 20% increase in performance. Almost all teams are out of sync on critical issues. Although most CEOs are surprised at the degree of misalignment, most of them acknowledge the problem. They just don’t know how to identify where the team is misaligned on critical growth issues (like those issues represented in the questions above), or what steps they should take to get the team in sync.
  15. 15. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint15 Team alignment can become a competitive advantage for your company because so few companies do it. is to schedule a one-day workshop for the team to identify and agree on your company’s PRIMARY Goal, Priorities, Action Points, and non-operational Metrics.
  16. 16. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint16 PRIMARY Goal for this Year 1 2 5 3 6 4 7
  17. 17. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint17 Last year we launched an Inbound Marketing strategy for one of our channel partners. An Inbound Marketing engine takes between 18- 24 months to build. I chose HubSpot as the Inbound software platform to build our channel partner’s Inbound web site. I asked Bryan Halligan, CEO and Founder of HubSpot this question: “If I did one thing well in the next 12 months to build the best Inbound Marketing engine, what would content.” I used Bryan’s suggestion to- BUILD AN EXECUTION STRATEGY AROUND A PRIMARY GOAL -to Create a Continuous Flow of Quality Content by 12.31. My strategy included priorities, action points and metrics to accomplish that PRIMARY Goal.
  18. 18. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint18 The PRIMARY Goal is the “one thing”, or next big step that your inner circle needs to accomplish by 12.31 of the current year. It can be a traditional providers. The PRIMARY Goal can also their PRIMARY Goal as “Our New Product on the Shelf by 12.31”; which meant their new product will be available in Walmart by the end of the year. become the foundation of your team’s Execution Habit. As I previously stated, almost all leadership teams are out of provides the “track” for your Strategy your team to be on the same page with company strategy. Studies reveal that ripple effects occur throughout the organization when a company’s inner circle aligns around any worthy goal that impacts the company’s performance. These ripples improve operational addition to increasing the bottom line.
  19. 19. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint19 For example, when Paul O’Neill took the helm as CEO of Alcoa after several years of declining earnings, he made it clear that the company would focus on one thing going forward: Plant Safety. “ ” Charles Duhigg, The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business As a result of O’Neill’s strategic focus, Alcoa employees world-wide aligned around Plant Safety for the next decade while the company
  20. 20. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint20 PRIMARY Goal Examples: • 500 Platinum Memberships by 12.31 • 250 Systems Placed by 12.31 • Break Even by 12.31 • UberWidget on the Shelf by 12.31 • 5 Hospital Buying Groups as Clients by 12.31 • $12 Million in Capital Secured by 12.31 PRIMARY Goal Tips: • Ask your team “What is the one thing we can do, that by doing it everything else will be easier or uneccessary?” • Make the PRIMARY Goal actionable and attach the year-end completion date • Answer this question in the PRIMARY Goal statement: “What is the X to Y by when?” • Help your team word it correctly, but make sure they like it, embrace it, and own it
  21. 21. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint21 Choose Your Right Priorities, Action Points, and Metrics 1 2 5 3 6 4 7
  22. 22. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint22 Priorities Start by asking this question: “What are the 2-3 things in the next 90 days that will cause a 50% increase to accomplish our PRIMARY Goal?” • Capture Phase VI ASCD Contract • Sell 30 Terminals in Q3 • Increase Margins on Current Product Line • Secure $3 Million in Additional Cash • Create an Accurate Financial Forecasting Model • Hire the New COO Strategy can be simple. Teams focus when they are responsible for a handful of priorities with actionable points and deadlines. Priorities should include those 2-3 (up to 5) actionable tasks that best contribute to the team accomplishing this year’s PRIMARY goal. More than 5 priorities results in no priorities. Normally the priorities last for at least 90 days. They don’t often change within the quarter, unless something unexpected happens with the company; for example, a market change or an unexpected opportunity. The priorities must apply directly to the PRIMARY Goal, not another objective.
  23. 23. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint23 Action Points Start by asking this question: “What are the 3-5 next-step action points for this priority?” Action Point Examples: • Publish the Merlot eBook by next Tuesday, March 7, owned by Mick Thompson • Secure presentation with ACME by March 14, owned by Tom Sorenson • Create plan to reduce costs on NewCo product line by March 7, owned by Susan Smith • Close SimCo deal by March 17, owned by Pam Worthington by March 18, owned by Nick Flagler The time frame for action points usually spans between 1 week to 1 month; the shorter the better. Action points serve as the next- steps “to do” list for each priority. Identify an “Owner” for each action point from the inner circle, and specify a date the action point will be completed. Action points can change from meeting to meeting depending on the changing dynamics in the company maneuverability. As soon as an action point is accomplished, archive it and replace it with the action point; or delete and replace the action point if it is no longer relevant.
  24. 24. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint24 Metrics Start by asking this question: metrics (KPIs) that will best represent performance on the priorities to accomplish the PRIMARY Goal.” Examples: • Number of Platinum Memberships • RMA Return Days • Number of Systems Delivered • Number Leads for Widget Product Line • Percentage of Inventory Accuracy percentages, etc, will provide a clear benchmark of the company’s progress on your priorities and action points.
  25. 25. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint25 Adopt a Strategy Scoreboard 1 2 5 3 6 4 7
  26. 26. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint26 Nothing drives the energy and enthusiasm for execution more than winning. Your team needs a simple, but comprehensive scoreboard for weekly strategy meetings so that they know whether they are winning or losing. A scoreboard is essential to a sustainable Execution Habit because it compels team action and accountability on a regular basis. Your Scoreboard should be a one page document, like the Inc. Navigator Strategy Scoreboard, that you can easily update and edit. It should document team alignment on the priorities and actions before you enter your weekly meetings.
  27. 27. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint27 Your Scoreboard should include the following categories: • The PRIMARY Goal for this year • The top 3-5 priorities that will accomplish the PRIMARY Goal • The top 3-5 next-step action points for each priority; including an owner for that action point and an anticipated completion date on the priorities • A list of inner circle team members so you can choose who will assume responsibility for each action point on the priorities • The option to invite inner circle team members to vote on misalignment on strategy and provides the catalyst to make changes and get in sync. The team can vote on the priorities with these questions: • Is this at top 5 priority? • Is this clear enough to guide action? • Are we doing the right things and achieving the right results? Away Home 3 7 8:45 Period 3
  28. 28. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint28 The team can vote on each action point with this question: • Are we doing the right things to achieve the right results? Voting results are valuable for: • The initial Strategy Scoreboard retreat (see below) discussion several priorities have been changed, or multiple action points have been added • A monthly ritual as part of the meeting strategy meeting rhythm A one-day Strategy Scoreboard retreat will give your team the opportunity to discuss and agree on the PRIMARY Goal, priorities, action points and metrics. This one-day session will probably be the most valuable day you will ever spend as a leadership team. You will have strategic discussions in this meeting that you’ve never had before. At the end of the day your Scoreboard will be set up and you will be ready for your subsequent weekly Scoreboard meetings.
  29. 29. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint29 Schedule a Meeting Rhythm 1 2 5 3 6 4 7
  30. 30. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint30 The inner circle team should establish a weekly rhythm to review performance, report on company or market changes, and update the Scoreboard as needed. These review sessions should not take accustomed to meeting, a weekly ritual will be a change in behaviour but remember you’re making the effort to develop a sustainable Execution Habit that will produce huge ROI for your efforts. S M T W T F S M E E T
  31. 31. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint31 Create Team Accountability1 2 5 3 6 4 7
  32. 32. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint32 Team accountability is rare, but it is attainable. A simple dashboard that includes priorities, assigned action points with deadlines, and metrics will provide the catalyst for team interaction. Offering the team an opportunity to vote on the priorities and action points can also fuel accountability. As I said before, we’ve documented that 92% of CEOs believe their teams agree with and can clearly communicate their strategy; while 2% of leadership teams can list the same priorities. Team accountability is rare because most CEOs don’t realize the degree of their team’s misalignment. Companies entering No Man’s Land must transition from a culture based on loyalty to a performance based culture. Team accountability is a critical component of that transition -
  33. 33. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint33 The Secret Ingredient to Execution There is a secret ingredient to successful execution. It’s an essential above, to develop an Execution Habit. It’s BELIEF. The Inner Circle team in order to execute effectively. Your inner circle members sit at your table not only because they perform; they’re there because they believe. They must believe in the “why” of your product or service, and they must believe in each other. If they are not currently rowing in the same direction on strategy, and as I’ve stated almost all teams aren’t in sync, then creating an Execution Habit with team accountability will help them get on the same page to get the right things done. They will learn how to participate in the execution process together. They will build that eventually they’ll help pave the path for each other to accomplish the PRIMARY Goal.
  34. 34. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint34 Adaptability An Execution Habit equips your team to strategically adapt to changing conditions. Strategic adaptation in business is similar to the tactics of our military elite. Our Special Forces utilize the same strategic decision around the world. The foundation of the Special Forces strategy is based on the team’s ability to make a decision and then quickly learn from their unfolding circumstances, outside information, and the evolving interaction with their environment. By using this process the team adapts and learns to choose their next move. In other words, they remain “agile”. The Wall Street Journal described the need for a company to adapt: Now, even though the economy is slowly picking up, those fresh habits aren’t fading. “This downturn has changed the way we will think about our business for many years to come,” says Steve head of the North American management consulting practice for Accenture Ltd., is even more blunt: “Strategy, as we knew it, is dead,” he contends. “Corporate clients decided that increased important than simply predicting the future.” From: Strategic Plans Lose Favor, Wall Street Journal Great companies have leadership teams that adapt and learn from their decisions. They are able to keep their strategy simple and remain focused on the top handful of priorities. They’ve developed the habit to execute.
  35. 35. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint35 The Execution Catalyst You’ve got a lonely job as the CEO/Founder of your company. The weight of the entire business sits on your shoulders. Just as Tony Horton accelerated the exercise habit serving as the catalyst for P90X, your ability to develop a sustainable Execution Habit increases dramatically when you have an experienced Execution Catalyst to support you and your team through the 60 Day Sprint.
  36. 36. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint36 Traits of a Great Execution Catalyst Perceptive - A great Execution Catalyst has uncommon, common sense. Your Catalyst should exhibit the ability to ask the right questions at the right time, clarify the reality of your complex problems, and suggest simple solutions. As Da Vinci once said, “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” Aggressive - Accountability can be as valuable as wisdom. You need a Catalyst who can keep you and your team radically objective about your business. A Catalyst keeps you focused on the 3-5 top KPIs so that you can make the right decisions, get your team in sync, and execute effectively. Your Catalyst should also help you identify what you, as the Founder, do best. A great Catalyst will help you Play Your Truest Note more often. Committed - you can’t trust a passive bystander to help you and your company break through No Man’s Land. You want someone who is “all in” on you, your value proposition, and the goal to grow your business.
  37. 37. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint37 Experienced - your Catalyst should have proven success working with CEOs of companies twice your size. Your issues and gaps should be familiar territory. When it comes to developing an Execution Habit, experience matters. Choose someone who’s been there. Responsive - although scheduled meetings are important, minute phone call at the right time can make the difference between the best and second best response to a critical issue during your Strategy Sprint.
  38. 38. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint38 The First Step to Become an Economy Hero A sustainable Execution Habit is, without question, a competitive advantage because so few teams of emerging growth companies have escaped the tyranny of the urgent long enough to make alignment, accountability and prioritization a routine. Founders in No Man’s Land struggle with the urgent more than in any other stage of corporate growth. They get buried in the business to the point where they lose focus on the “why” of the “what” they created. As one Founder stated in the Inc. Magazine article, The Pschycological Price of Entrepreneurship, “As CEO, you have this self-image; you’re the master of the universe,” he says. “Then all of a sudden, you’re not.”
  39. 39. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint39 The Founder and their team get stuck and too involved in everything. Less than 10% of companies that reach No Man’s Land survive it. You can beat those odds and become an Economy Hero once you close your Execution Gap with a simple, but powerful Execution Habit. An Execution Habit: • frees your company from the No Man’s Land trap • adds value to you company • creates new ways to help your clients • makes your team’s capabilities more valuable • makes execution and agility a competitive advantage The Sprint to develop your habit will require focus, desire and determination from every member of your inner circle. But the the time and effort will be worth it. As I said, Execution is the biggest hurdle you must clear in order to break through the granite barrier of second stage. The Execution Habit takes the mystery out of execution, just as Carl Daikeler took the mystery out of exercise with P90X. objective about your company. Contact us for a complimentary custom report, used by over 600 emerging growth companies, that will get your team objective and in sync on the critical No Man’s Land issues.
  40. 40. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint40 CONTACT ME BRENT@INCNAV.COMAT OR C A L L M E A T 407.448.9477 t o d a y f o r y o u r c o m p l i m e n t a r y r e p o r t
  41. 41. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint41 T H E E C O N O M Y H E R O E S M A N I F E S T O THE FREEDOM FIGHT FOR ENTREPRENEURS
  42. 42. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint42 grasping the brass ring of freedom. They journeyed from all points to pursue dreams and launch their own business. Our ancestors offered every ounce of their innovation forged with an unyielding work ethic to initiate a movement of what we now recognize as our nation’s competitive advantage – our entrepreneurs. They were then and remain today America’s Economy Heroes. Big business can fail, we know that now. Corporate icons struggle to remain in business. We depended on them, invested in them and 5,000 employees) provided only 2% of the jobs in this country. Second stage companies fail too. In fact over 90% of emerging growth companies don’t make it, even though the less than 10% that do survive, and create sustained growth, generate over 80% of employment and almost all innovation in this country. These Founders take risk to advance their ideas and fuel our unique cultural environment that enables entrepreneurs to march “North” while every else is marching “South”. These Entrepreneurs are not corporate “rock stars”. Their stories are not as legendary as SouthWest, FedEx, or Walmart – yet. Economy Heroes are more important now than any other time in our history. They need attention, not bailouts.
  43. 43. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint43 What will turn the current economic tide? Our labor cost? Our engineering? Our science? Wall Street and Washington can’t move the needle. The market rises only to eventually plummet like a millstone in open water. We watch the 24/7 news stations with sweat streaming as we internalize the dramatic blow by blow anchor blather. We fantasize the worst, and our political leaders react with one “magic trick” after another; hoping something friendly will appear and be embraced. We must elevate awareness and provide support to our Economy Heroes. All entrepreneurs eventually face “No Man’s Land” (a term formed by Doug Tatum, author of No Man’s Land: Where Growing Companies Fail). No Man’s Land is an inevitable “adolescent” stage of corporate growth where most companies stall. Corporate adolescence often produces agonizing battles between the habits of the lonely entrepreneur and the immutable laws of growth. The result is often confusion, frustration, stagnation, and loss of employee morale. Our heroes face huge obstacles; they require essential information, accountability, capital, and political support to succeed. If they thrive, our economy will survive. Like the courageous immigrants of future. They are America’s competitive advantage. We must free them to do what they do best. It’s that simple.
  44. 44. The Economy Heroes Strategy Sprint44 I F T H E Y T H R I V E OUR ECONOMY WILL SURVIVE