Should it be a democratic process?

Even with your team's help, as the head of the business you should lead the effort. It is vital to hear others' views and get their input and feedback, but if a clear and compelling direction doesn't naturally emerge, you must make the call. Don't try to create a strategy by committee. Relying on consensus can produce a less-than-ambitious result and a strategy that is more like a compromise than an ambitious aspiration.

That said, as we discussed in Chapter 8, it is important to keep in mind from the start that you will need the commitment and support of other managers and a wide swath of employees to execute a plan. In his management development work, Thomas Saporito has seen too many CEOs fail because they attempted to charge ahead without this level of buy-in: “A CEO may be 100% correct with his or her strategy, but without deep support for it from the board, senior team, and employees, it doesn't matter,” he wrote.

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