McGrath: Speeding Things Up

We are talking about leadership characteristics that nimble corporations require. the first characteristic related to seeing realities. The second relates to timing. Logically, one cannot dispute that if the pace of market change is accelerating, taking advantage of opportunities require faster paced decision making. Delays eat into the time frame where profit is to be found. And yet, we find that corporate decision making is often slow, especially if it relates to big strategic questions.

Top heavy decision making structures (reliance on boards, for example) will slow things down. It will also distance decision making from information flow. One can argue that the more nimble firm will, therefore, have a flatter decision making hierarchy.

But … if decision making is dispersed, how does one keep consistency around strategy? this is an old debate. The answer must be found in distributed shared vision. That requires enhanced dialogue — keeping more people involved in the conversation. How does one do that? Getting that right may be more important than guaranteeing that each and every decision is right.

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