WashingtonExec reached out to area executives to gain insight and share local “secrets to success” stories. We thought that our readers would appreciate a series designed around their peers as well as from those who have the expertise but might not have the platform to share their knowledge.
This morning’s advice is from Sterling Phillips, CEO of GTSI.
“It is my view as a company leader that there are two crucial elements of success. Those are clarity and focus.
It is very important that the leader, and the company, have blinding clarity on the goals. strategy and priorities they are pursuing. Of course, those goals and strategies must be the “right” ones to lead the company to success, but if they are not effectively communicated, they lose their effectiveness. The corollary is those clear goals must be clearly communicated to the work force. The common pitfalls are a) goals/strategies that are too convoluted, numerous or complex to be readily understood by those who must execute and b) a failure of the leadership to clearly communicate and repeatedly reinforce the goals/strategies to their followers.
The second element of success is focus. Large collections of people with different roles and backgrounds (i.e. a company) become easily distracted from their common goals and/or strategies. It’s human nature and organizational dynamics. It is essential that the leaders maintain their focus on the most important priorities of the business and help others maintain their focus on important common priorities as well. There is a dramatic improvement in the power and effectiveness of the organization when the right level of common focus is achieved.