How do you promote a culture of strategic thinking?  There are four easy steps:

  1. Transparency – When management shares information regarding the current market, industry, customers, competitors, and goals, it keeps everyone up to speed. When an entire organization is enlightened, they can collectively work towards the organization’s goals.
  2. Promote solutions – Many times, we operate in reaction mode, placing bandages on problems. Encourage managers and team members to not only react to an issue, but to devise a long-term permanent solution.
  3. Promote future perspective – This is directly related to promoting solutions. Encourage everyone to ask two questions when proposing a solution. How does this serve our goals?  What impact will it have on these goals?
  4. Assign mentors – Everyone should have a mentor. New employees should be assigned one during the on-boarding process.  Existing employees can be paired up with colleagues.  Every manager should have a mentor that sits at the executive level.  Mentors help with training, accountability, and, most importantly, growing within the position.

Creating and nurturing a culture of strategic thinking taps into the collective education and experience of an entire organization.  It also helps to identify natural leaders that can be promoted to more senior positions as the need arises.

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