Summary of Closing the Execution Gap

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“Vision without execution is hallucination,” warned inventor Thomas Edison. CEOs love to focus on vision and strategy, but without execution, vision and strategy can’t accomplish anything. According to HR consultant Richard Lepsinger, who surveyed executives in 409 companies, many organizations suffer from poor execution. He offers solid solutions to that problem, including numerous valuable tips, tools and tactics. Although his writing style is a little heavy on lists and some of the information is obvious, Lepsinger offers a good overview of how to lead employees to execute more effectively. getAbstract recommends his presentation to leaders and managers who are responsible for implementing strategy and turning vision into reality. HR managers will also benefit from Lepsinger’s insights, since he comes from that field.

About the Author

Richard Lepsinger, an HR consultant, is the president of OnPoint Consulting and the co-author of three business books, including The Art and Science of 360-Degree Feedback.



The Gap in Execution

Skillful execution – not visionary leaders or elaborate company strategies – is what produces results. Poor execution is problematic in a normal economy and ruinous in a difficult one. The inability to “get stuff done” – to execute – will wreck even the best-laid plans. HR consultant Richard Lepsinger asked 409 executives from diverse industries three questions about execution:

  1. “Is there a gap between an organization’s ability to formulate a vision and strategy” and its ability to “achieve business results?”
  2. “What differentiates organizations that are more effective at execution from those that are less effective?”
  3. “What can leaders do to enhance their organizations’ ability to close the strategy-execution gap and achieve business results?”

Results showed that 49% of respondents believe their organizations suffer a gap between strategy and execution, and 64% of those who believe a gap exists don’t think their companies can close it. Firms that execute successfully use the following five “bridges” to unite ambition and achievement: 1) Executives handle change well; 2) all business units and management levels coordinate...

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