How to Narrow Down the Strategic Focus in a Team

By Steve Zuieback · Posted Wednesday, November 27, 2019


Anyone can come up with multiple strategies to achieve a team or organizational priority. In fact, the problem in most organizations is that we are trying to do too much, implementing too many programs, to achieve a priority. The hard work is to narrow down the focus of multiple strategies to a few key strategic approaches. There are four very simple approaches to narrowing down the focus of a team. Depending on the emotional attachment that team members have to the options, it may be as simple as asking which strategy is most important, or may necessitate a much more analytical process when emtions and attachments run high. The four recommended approaches reviewed in this short video are:

1.  Asking the Question: What is the most important strategy and the strategy that must come first?

2.  Polling: Give each person a number of votes to cast as they see fit. The number of votes is equal to the number of possible strategy choices divided by 3. If there are 12 strategies, each participant gets 4 votes.

3.  Paired Weighting: This process is used when people have some level of attachment to their strategy options and neither of the first two options seems to be working. In this process, each strategy option is weighed against every other option in a forced choice manner - i.e. Which option is more important, Strategy One versus Strategy Two. Can learn more about this process in the video as well as looking at the more detailed video, Paired Weighting.

4.  Decision Matrix: The Decision Matrix is used when emotional attachment to individual strategies runs high. In this process a matrix is created, with the strategy options listed on the vertical axis and criteria listed on the horizontal axis. The criteria are identified by the team members and represent all of the most important conditions that must be achieved through implementation of the selected strategy option. In addition, each criterion is given a relative weighting factor that reflects how important the criterion is to successful implementation. You will learn more about this option by watching the linked video and by watching the separate video on the Decision Matrix.




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