Essentials of Strategic Management

  • Why is leadership such an important element in strategy implementation? Find an example in a business you know about or you can research and discuss how CEO leadership affected a strategy implementation.

Leadership plays an important role in the implementation of strategy in an organization. First, organizational leadership establishes the strategic direction for the organization. Secondly, leadership provides the organizational controls that are required in the implementation of strategy. These controls may be in the form of establishment and emphasis of the desired ethical practices; sustenance of proper organizational culture; improvement and maintenance of human capital and core competencies; and the development of the desired social capital (Gamble & Thompson, 2010).

The leadership of the US Canon company has for several times enhanced strategy implementation through effective communication (Gamble & Thompson, 2010). The company has developed a culture of communicating balanced scorecard measures to all employees in a bid to promote a deep understanding of its strategies (Gamble & Thompson, 2010). The messages are often designed and delivered in several ways using different forms of media.

  • Has your organization’s strategic plan been communicated to you? If so, how and by whom? If not, how would such communication improve your organizational effectiveness? Is it important for employees to know the strategic plan of a company? Why or why not?

I am an employee at the Mayo Clinic Health system. I work as an executive assistant at the St. James, MN location. I am always informed of any strategic intentions of the organization. The organization implements integrated healthcare strategies that are communicated to various stations by the communication department.

It’s important for employees to know the strategic plan of a company. The company employees form the workforce that will be used to implement strategies. The workforce needs to properly understand the strategy in order to carry out an effective implementation (Gamble & Thompson, 2010). Studies indicate that a poor understanding of the strategy by employees is the most important barrier to successful strategy implementation.

Therefore employees should be made to understand the company’s strategy through effective communication from the top management. Effective strategy communication should be developed as part of the organizational culture and not a onetime activity (Gamble & Thompson, 2010).

  • What is the role of a manager in the organization and what is the role of a leader? Can you be one and not the other?

The manager role is basically to ensure the smooth running of the business operations. He/she functions to achieve the organization’s objectives and goals. This is implemented through supervision of the workforce; solving of organizational problems that arise; responding to the needs of various clients; ensuring that policy is effectively communicated within the organization (Gamble & Thompson, 2010).

On the other hand the leader of an organization performs the following functions: he/she inspires the members of the organization; creates the vision and missions that are adopted by the organization; anticipates the needs of clients and strategizes for them; engages with other stakeholders to create policy for the organization; he/she ensures that people are people are doing the right job; and finally, focuses on the direction that the organization should take (Gamble & Thompson, 2010).

It’s possible to a manager and not a leader and possible to be a leader and a manager. Managing tasks enables an individual to familiarize with the operations of the given task. Doing this over and over again will give one the knowledge to understand what works and what doesn’t work and thus impart leadership skills (Gamble & Thompson, 2010).


Gamble, J., & Thompson, A. (2010). Essentials of Strategic Management. Alabama: University of Alabama.

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