Apple Podcasts: https://apple.co/2NHRRDl
Spotify: https://spoti.fi/3AyHCUd

If you’re an engineer then you might not like to talk about strategy. We get it! But, strategy is super important in any successful organization. This week, we are going to focus on how strategy is a component that we need to focus on as well as operations.

The simple fact is, strategy is not just simple planning; it’s a larger item that shows where your organization will be going someday. If you’re technical, you might not understand this. You might be someone who hears a bunch of strategic ideas and instantly thinks that none of it can be done. You might be thinking that the ideas are crazy and completely impossible.

The important thing to keep in mind is that none of these strategies and tactics need to be done tomorrow. These are ideas that are going to take time and very small steps forward. Strategy is where your organization is headed. You don’t have to get there by the end of the week!

Where your company is currently and where you will be in the future will look drastically different. You just have to focus on what you’re doing right now and then build to that future company bit by bit.

Look at strategy as the goal that your company is aiming towards, and operations are how you will get there. Strategy should be done in steps and you never have to know what the future step will be. If you’re on step 2, then do what is necessary for step 2 and slowly, step 3 will work its way to your understanding and become clear to your company. Once you’re on step 3, that can be your focus until step 4 begins to form and take place.

Another important thing to keep in mind is, while strategy is important, it’s not everything. Some people get too lost in strategy and nothing ever gets done. Those are the people that engineers hate. Their heads are always in the clouds and nothing ever happens. Operations are the day-to-day tasks that allow strategy to be accomplished. Both strategy and operations must work hand-in-hand.

The frustrating thing about strategy is you most likely will not see the fruits of your labor for months if not years. Results from operations can be seen by the end of the day. This doesn't make one more important than the other — it simply means that you have to be patient and know that both are very critical to your organization no matter the length of time it takes to see results.

In order for both of these to work together, there must be trust. People in strategy need to understand that their engineers will have the ideas and the operations people will be able to accomplish it. The people in operations need to look at the strategic people and know that they have great direction and know where the company is headed. When both work together, that’s when success happens.

In order to understand if your strategy and operations are working together, look back at your company and where you were a couple of years ago. Have you accomplished what your strategists thought would accomplish with the operations help? If not, be honest and make changes based on what you see that is working. Essentially, don’t just take steps to take them. Take steps to get where you’re trying to go.

The moral of the story: strategy is where you are going and operations are how you get there.

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