If you’re in the early years of people management, chances are that you’ll be in a 1:1 or performance review with your boss, and they’ll look at you and say something like:
‘Things are going well but it would be great if you could think more… strategically.’
And you’ll pause for second, give their words a second to sink in, and then you’ll say something like:
‘Ok thank you for letting me know, do you have any suggestions for how I should go about that.’
And then it will get awkward.
Because whilst ‘being more strategic’ sounds great, it’s really hard to define. As Lesley Sim, co-founder of Newsletter Glue says:
‘There are many levels and definitions of strategy and everyone is answering the question from their own vantage point. Being strategic as a junior marketer in a year-old startup is a totally different ball game to being strategic as Chairman of a Fortune 500.’
Fortunately Sim didn’t stop there, and provides some ways she thinks we can actually be more strategic in our roles. They are:
As Sim acknowledges, some people will look at this list and say ‘that’s not strategy’. But it will a) make you better at your job, and b) make you appear ‘strategic’ in the eyes of your boss. So you won’t have to have that conversation again.
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