Ok…you’ve worked hard to come up with a strategy.  You pulled your team together and have developed a strategy with clear steps and a crystal clear understanding of what a win is.  Wondering why your strategy isn’t working?  Maybe you’ve looked over the steps again…the tactics…and tried another take or even two.  But you’re still not succeeding.

Sound familiar?  I’ve got one in mind right now.  Here’s the question: could it be that your strategy actually doesn’t lead to what you’ve described as a win?

Seth Godin has a great post today about the difference between strategy and tactics.  Here’s his set-up:

"I got a note from a frustrated marketer yesterday. She wanted to understand how to grow her business. It felt like they were doing everything right. They had a motivated, well-trained salesforce, a great product, a decent website, etc. Everyone was working super hard.

Her question: ‘We sell something to manufacturing companies, something that would essentially replace a large part of the plant operations team. Obviously, we can’t sell to them, because they want to get bigger, not smaller. We need to sell to the CEO, but we can’t get his attention because the savings involved aren’t big enough to get his attention. How do we get to the CEO?’"

Get the picture?  Can you transfer the concept to your own situation?  Here’s mine:

We’ve got a consulting service that we sell to churches who are attempting to launch more effective off-site groups for adults.  It’s relatively expensive because it is time intensive.  Most of the time the person most aware of the need is a staff member who wears multiple hats, knows this is important, but doesn’t have the budget to say ‘yes’ without higher approval.  To get approval we’ve got to talk with the Senior Pastor.  And…it is often difficult and time consuming to get an opportunity to talk with the Senior Pastor.

Sound familiar?  Hopefully you see the similarities.  Probably you could think through your situation and come up with situations in your own work that are similar.

The question is, when do you come to the conclusion that your strategy is not working because it’s not a good strategy?  In our case it still needs tweaking, but works on occasion.  What about your situation?  Maybe you’re becoming aware that the strategy worked in the past but no longer works…ever…and you’ve tried jiggling the tactics…and it still doesn’t work.

Let’s just say, take a look at Seth’s whole post and consider whether it might be time to take a run at another ski slope altogether!

The Difference Between Strategy and Tactics