1st Edition

Strategy Execution Translating Strategy into Action in Complex Organizations

By Andrew MacLennan Copyright 2011
    248 Pages 42 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    248 Pages 42 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Strategy execution is one of the most important and exciting topics in management. Implementing strategy in today's complex organizations is an enormous challenge but one that all leaders must tackle. This lively book is an essential guide to strategy execution for practicing managers and those in advanced management education. It combines the rigour of advanced research with the accessibility of practical experience and application to lead readers through the subject.

    Drawing together existing knowledge and reporting findings from his own research, Andrew MacLennan brings this often neglected topic sharply into focus. After introducing and defining strategy execution, the book presents a series of systematic frameworks to help managers and leaders:

    • identify common strategy execution barriers and diagnose performance problems in particular situations
    • translate conceptual strategies into concrete activities
    • align emergent activities and projects with strategic objectives
    • support critical activities by aligning organizational designs and systems

    Strategy Execution is an insightful, engaging and practical book. The models are supplemented throughout with real world examples, summaries of key issues and signposts to further readings. It is a comprehensive, easy to use book offering students and practitioners a systematic approach to strategy implementation.

    1. Introduction  2. What is Strategy Execution?  3. The Strategy Execution Challenge  4. Diagnosing Strategy Execution Problems  5. A Framework for Strategy Execution  6. Translating Strategy into Action  7. Aligning Action with Strategy  8. Aligning Organizational Designs and Systems  9. Conclusion


    Andrew MacLennan is a facilitator, educator, researcher and leading expert on strategy execution. He is Managing Director of Strategy Execution Ltd, a member of the global faculty of Duke Corporate Education and lectures at Edinburgh Business School, UK. He has written widely on strategy execution and is a sought-after speaker on the subject. 

    'This is a masterful book about an important subject. Strategy execution is the missing link, without which even the best of plans is rendered impotent. Yet it is so often inadequately addressed or overlooked completely. This is why Dr MacLennan’s book is so welcome. It is both eminently practical and intellectually rigorous, with a wealth of sensible and rational advice, and extremely useable models. It will hold the attention of anyone who is interested in how strategy can really be made to work in practice.' Nigel Slack, Professor of Operations Management & Strategy, University of Warwick, UK

    'This is an excellent book highlighting the common disconnect between what organisations think they should do and what they are actually doing. All too often, organisations find making the right things happens very difficult. This book explains why this is and what you can do to change it - it is relevant for all companies trying to make change happen.' Neil Roden, Group Director, Human Resources, The Royal Bank of Scotland plc

    'Andrew MacLennan manages to blend his extensive experience and deep knowledge of underlying theory into a marvellously readable, accessible and practical manual on strategy execution that that belongs within easy reach of every strategist – whether manager or student, practicing or aspiring.' Neil Kay, Emeritus Professor of Business Economics, University of Strathclyde, UK

    'The art of the possible made a reality. This book is a must read for budding strategists, full of great frameworks and techniques, all of which can be applied in real situations. It provides the reader with a practical perspective and confidence to make things happen. A rare read in the area of strategy, indeed.' Tony Brown, Managing Director – People & Change, Friends Provident plc

    'Deeply thoughtful and well researched. Provides clear, practical ways to ensure that strategic plans really do achieve their intended business results.' Tracey Ashworth-Davies, HR Director, Molson Coors Brewing Company