Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Don't Compromise on Strategy

Sometimes compromise is necessary. 

If a group can’t reach collaborative consensus then you have to move to voting, where different factions give up something they want in order to make the result the least distasteful option available – that will get the required votes.  The results are quite sub-optimal and, by the way, this describes our current situation (for years) in the US Congress (I’ll stop; both parties are totally at fault).

The most famous story of how distasteful compromise can be is when King Solomon was petitioned by two women who both claimed an infant to be their own.  His judgment was to cut the baby in two and give a half to each woman.  The real mother recoiled and said the other woman could keep the baby.  And this is how the very wise Solomon determined the child’s real mother.

Don’t compromise on strategy.  No one wants half a baby.

Don’t be satisfied with a watered down version of what you really want – of the future that inspires you.  You can’t go two places at the same time.  Give your strategic planning committee the time to work through the options and ultimately join hands to support a clear future strategy.  Yes – you may even need to bring in an outside facilitator to navigate through such a situation.  But don’t take the easy route of agreeing to something that no one vehemently objects to but neither will anyone enthusiastically support.

Search your hearts for the dreams of what you really want, share these with one another, and then work toward a consensus vision and strategy that everyone can enthusiastically support.  You will engage the future much more effectively and make even more of a Mission Impact.

For more ideas on how you can lead breakthroughs in your organization, follow this blog and check out my web site at   You will find free resources you can download, including a Breakthrough Strategy Workbook that you can download at no cost.  You can also check out my book, Mission Impact:  Breakthrough Strategies for Nonprofits, and buy it if you are interested.  And you can follow Sheehan Nonprofit Consulting on Facebook.

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