Strategy and execution is a false dichotomy, unnaturally sheared apart in order to divide labor in increasingly complex organizations. It’s an efficient approach. Alone, the shearing isn’t a problem. The problem is that both sides don’t see it as their responsibility to intelligently pull the two sides back together again. They leave a chasm, hoping that it will miraculously close on its own. It never does. Things just fall through it.
The best strategists and executors don’t see a hand-off between strategy and execution. They see an integrated whole. They continuously hand ideas back and forth throughout all phases of a project, strengthening them together. They fight to bring each other closer. Over the years, I’ve noticed that the best strategists and executors believe certain things that drive their success — things that the
mediocre strategists and executors don’t believe.