A strategy is of course worthless if the only ones that care are the board of directors. While the board is responsible to ensure that your company has a strategy, it doesn’t really help if your strategy stops there. Having a strategy isn’t even half the effort and IKEA knows this.
If the strategy is going to be executed, the company has to have resources enough to follow through and all employees have to know how. Make a few practical rules for your employees to live by – to tell your people how the strategy is going to be implemented. This is how IKEA is leading the way and Ingvar Kamprad (the IKEA founder) has 9 commandments:
1) Product ranges – IKEA’s identity is simple, bright. This is linked to the lifestyle you want to convey. Functional and good quality, but at a reasonable price.
2) The IKEA-spirit – strong vital reality. Enthusiasm. Countinous renewal. Helping one another doing an even better job. Humility.
3) Good profits – provide more resources and more oportunities. We need money to reach our goals. Everything has a price tag on it – e.g. the catalog. Saving money is a virtue – even small amounts.
4) Good results desipte limited resources. Reaching your goals with limited resources is a virtue. Waste is a mortal sin.
5) Simplicity is a virtue. Simple procedures and policies are powerful. Simplicity in our behavior gives us strength. Excessive planning is also waste. Concentrate on the execution.
6) Think – what can be done differently? Why are we doing it like this? Beware the curse of knowledge and experience. Prior experience can dampen your thirst for knowledge and willingness to experiment
7) Focus – is vital to all prosperity. You cannot do everything, everywhere all the time, all at once. Strategy is choice – choice is deciding what NOT to do.
8) Being responsible is an advantage – being accountable is taking action. Fight the fear of failing. Making mistakes is the privilege of the action oriented.
9) There is more to be done than has been done so far – there is a wonderful future. A company that has reached its goals, will stagnate and lose its life power. The sense of being done is the best remedy for sleeping.