50+ Insightful Strategic Planning & Execution Statistics

Discover over 50 critical statistics on strategic planning and execution to inform your strategies in 2024. Contact us for more information!
50+ Insightful Strategic Planning & Execution Statistics
Discover over 50 critical statistics on strategic planning and execution to inform your strategies in 2024. Contact us for more information!

Are you among the 74% of executives who don't have faith that your company's transformative strategies will succeed? (McKinsey)

If so, can you pinpoint why?

If the answer is no, take a look at the data sets below. (It also wouldn’t hurt to read our article on the strategic planning process.) The insights revealed below speak volumes about the current strategic planning landscape, both in terms of how leaders feel about the process and the perceived problems around executing strategic plans. Are any of these attitudes or practices present at your organization?

Whether you’re a seasoned strategic planner, an aspiring one, or in a leadership role of any kind, it’s worth taking the time to understand the related data and consider how it might apply to you.

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50+ Insightful Strategic Planning & Execution Statistics

Confidence In Achieving Strategy

  • Only 2% of leaders are confident that they will achieve 80–100% of their strategic objectives. (Bridges Business Consulting)
  • 80% of leaders feel their company is good at crafting strategy but only 44% feel they are good at implementation. (Bridges Business Consulting)
  • 61% of executives feel they are not prepared for the strategic challenges they face upon being appointed to senior leadership roles. (HBR)
  • 40% say their company is good/excellent at feeding lessons from successful strategy implementation into formulation. (Economist)

Perceived Reasons For Failure/Roadblocks

  • 67% of well-formulated strategies failed due to poor execution. (HBR)
  • 4.5% of strategy potential is lost to poor action planning. (HBR)
  • 30% cite failure to coordinate across units as the single greatest challenge to executing their company’s strategy. (HBR)
  • 61% of respondents acknowledge that their firms often struggle to bridge the gap between strategy formulation and its day-to-day implementation. (Economist)
  • In 2016, the top three reasons strategy implementation failed were: 1) Poor communication, 2) Lack of leadership and 3) Using the wrong measures. (Economist)
  • Only 41% of respondents say their companies provide sufficiently skilled personnel to implement high priority strategic initiatives. (Economist)
  • Only 18% say that the hiring of people with the necessary business skills or leadership talent to drive strategy implementation is a very high priority at their firms. (Economist)

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  • 20% of staff members resist implementation initiatives. (Organizational Synergies)
  • 45% say ensuring staff members take different actions is the toughest implementation challenge. (Bridges Business Consulting)
  • 44% rank aligning the implementation of strategy to company culture as the toughest challenge. (Bridges Business Consulting)
  • 25% say measuring implementation is the toughest challenge. (Bridges Business Consulting)
  • Only 22% of employees feel that leaders have a clear direction for the organization. (Gallup)
  • In a survey of managers in more than 300 organizations, only 10% of respondents believed that all of their organization’s strategic priorities had the funds, people, and management support needed to succeed. (MIT Sloan)
  • 65% of companies are ‘somewhat ineffective’ or worse at introducing change caused by strategic initiatives. (Economist)
  • 58% of organizations believe their performance management systems are insufficient for monitoring the performance of strategy. (Gartner)

Awareness/Understanding Of Strategy

  • 60% of leaders think less than 20% of the workforce has at least a basic understanding of company strategy and can explain it. (Organizational Synergies, 2003)
  • 5% of employees are aware of and/or understand their company’s strategy. (Harvard Business Review, 2005)
  • 71% of employees cannot recognize their own company’s strategy in a multiple choice question. (Harvard Business Review, 2013)
  • Fewer than 33% of senior executives’ direct reports clearly understand the connections between corporate priorities. (HBR)
  • 37% say gaining peoples’ support across the whole organization is the toughest implementation challenge. (Economist)
  • Only 40% of employees strongly feel their manager really understands their organization’s strategy or goals. (Accenture)
  • 67% of employees do not understand their role when new growth initiatives are launched. (Gartner)

Poor Strategy Execution Practices

  • 85% of leadership teams spend less than one hour per month on strategy, and 50% spend no time at all on strategy. (Harvard Business Review, 2005)
  • Just 11% of companies employ a "fully-fledged" strategic control system. (Organizational Synergies, 2003)
  • A majority (92%) of organizations reported they do not track the key performance indicators to tell them how well they are doing in competition. (Organizational Synergies, 2003)
  • 70% of middle managers and more than 90% of front-line employees have compensation that is not linked to the corporate strategy. (Harvard Business Review, 2015)
  • 80% of the companies have at least one formal system for managing commitments across silos but 20% of managers believe these systems work well all or most of the time. (HBR)
  • Two-thirds of managers say that past performance is the biggest factor when making a promotion decision, but a culture that promotes strategy execution must reward teamwork, ambition, agility and a willingness to change. (HBR)

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  • Two-thirds of IT and HR functions are not aligned with their corporate strategy. (HBR)
  • 20% of managers think their organizations do well in allocating people across business units to support strategic initiatives. (HBR)
  • 80% of the workforce’s primary motivators for putting extra energy into the change program are not tapped into by leaders. (McKinsey)
  • Only 27% of employees and 42% of managers have access to their company’s strategic plan. (Organizational Synergies)
  • 45% of nearly 800 executives reported that their strategic planning processes failed to track the execution of strategic initiatives. (McKinsey)
  • 67% of key functions are not aligned with business unit and corporate strategies. (Gartner)

Contributors To Success

  • 77% of successful companies have an established mechanism to translate their strategy into operational terms and evaluate it on a day-to-day basis. (Palladium)
  • 75% of successful companies have a formal and pre-established system to inform on and manage their strategy. (Palladium)
  • 64% of successful companies build their budget based on their strategy, rather than on past behaviors. (Palladium)
  • 51% say one of the main reasons strategic initiatives succeed is leadership buy-in and support. (Economist)
  • 39% say one of the main reasons strategic initiatives succeed is skilled implementation. (Economist)

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  • 37% say one of the main reasons strategic initiatives succeed is a good fit between specific initiatives and general strategy. (Economist)
  • 32% say one of the main reasons strategic initiatives succeed is good planning (Economist)
  • 28% say one of the main reasons strategic initiatives succeed is being able to attract skilled personnel. (Economist)
  • 25% say one of the main reasons strategic initiatives succeed is good communication. (Economist)

Time Spent On Strategy

  • 70% of leaders spend less than one day a month reviewing strategy. (Bridges Business Consulting)
  • 98% of leaders think strategy implementation takes more time than strategy formulation. (Bridges Business Consulting)

All source articles are linked below.

What’s 1 Tangible Change You Can Make Now to Reach Your Strategic Goals?

Some of the most common barriers to successful strategy planning and execution are a lack of alignment, poor communication, and little-to-no performance tracking.

Once you start using strategy management software like ClearPoint Strategy, you’ll no longer have these issues.

Using ClearPoint Strategy software, you can easily:

  • Align departmental and organizational objectives as well as work plans
  • Track and report on performance measures
  • Manage strategic projects
  • Communicate strategy to all levels of the organization
  • Assign accountability on a group and individual level

In short, your organization will be in a better position to achieve its goals.

One final stat: Organizations that are able to successfully unlock the capacity to execute new growth strategies increase their profitability by 77%. (Gartner)

That’s compelling, isn’t it?

Take Control of Your Strategy Management and Execution with ClearPoint Strategy

If you’ve been doing your best but not achieving the results you hoped for, try something new. The difference between not using strategy software and using it is like night and day—you’ll notice a clear difference in your performance, and engage your employees in your mission like never before.

Interested in seeing ClearPoint in action? Reach out to us today—we’d love to show you!

Book your FREE 1-on-1 DEMO with ClearPoint Strategy


Harvard Business Review


Palladium Group

The Economist

Root (Part of Accenture)

Organizational Synergies

Bridges Business Consulting


MIT Sloan Management Review


FREE 41-page Strategy Execution Toolkit
Download: Strategy Execution Toolkit
50+ Insightful Strategic Planning & Execution Statistics

Ted Jackson

Co-Founder & Alabama Native

Ted is a Founder and Managing Partner of ClearPoint Strategy and leads the sales and marketing teams.

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