Blog //

How Executing as Promised Makes a Good Company GREAT.

By Lawrence McGlown
July 23, 2013

I read a great article about Executing as Promised on the HBR blog, written by Ty Montague. To drive home the point, the author created a new word –Storydoing, where the organization advances their narrative through action, not communication. His timing couldn’t be better.

Marketing and communications functions, agencies and the like have become enamored with telling stories. However, few step up to the plate, and assume accountability for delivery of the lofty, aspirational stories being shared.

An organization’s ability to Execute as Promised is 100% dependent on the degree to which each employee believes in their employer’s business purpose. On average, less than 1/3 of an organization’s employees are truly engaged in the business. The winners do a far better job of motivating a greater percentage of their employees.

Within engaged organizations, across business functions, more employees are aligned on what their organizations do for people, why it matters, and how their unique approach to executing their stated promise(s) is unlike any other product or service on the market.

In the article, seven companies were placed into the “Storydoing” category.

  1. Target
  2. Walt Disney
  3. Starbucks
  4. American Express
  5. Apple
  6. Jet Blue
  7. IBM

Based on my knowledge of Executing as Promised, I would omit Apple, Starbucks, and Target. All are solid brands, but their ability to make memorable possibilities real are not as consistent as they once were. To be in league with an exemplar like Disney, every touchpoint must live up to the expectations established by the managing organization –independent of the employee or group of employees executing the many elements a given customer will experience.

I can think of three different Target stores in my city that offer different customer experiences. I’m aware of more than ten different Starbucks locations, with varying degrees of delivery on the company promise. The primary driver of customer experience variance is due to varying degrees and styles of employee delivery.

As for Apple, that train began slowing long before this discussion.

To read the article, click here.


About Us //

The McGlown Group helps organizations translate business strategy into messaging tools that clarify what to do as an employee, and what to expect as a customer. The deliverables drive alignment between employee and customer beliefs, while pinpointing when the customer promise is, or is not, made real – and what to do about it.