Leaders Letter Newsletter

Leaders Letter 24 – Turning Being Strategic Into A Company-Wide Playbook


Dear Leaders, Happy Monday.

Over the past six months, I have written to you weekly on important topics, leadership, company culture, trust and strategy.

I truly believe that beliefs and bets (leaders letter 5 is a great read on why beliefs and bets are essential) are the best way to frame and building a long term successful company-wide strategy.

A strategy is supposed to be hard but reworking work for the year ahead, in short, the strategy is the act of deciding what not to do, it’s agreeing on the actions you are going to take, the steps you will take and the tactics you will follow.

As soon as you add in layers and layers of tactics you are moving away from the top-level leadership piece a strategy has. Details are essential at a department and team level but sharing all of this information makes a strategy a detailed playbook, and this is actually a great way to breakdown a complicated business for everyone within the business to understand the steps you and fellow teams are taking. This also ensures everyone knows the next steps forward and where it all aligns, and if the playbook needs updating it can be and send out notifications tactical elements have changed.

Recently I have heard be strategic, being strategic and strategically minded as ways to explain acts of being deliberate or making the time to think clearly and plan.

This is not directly bad, however, allowing teams to hide behind being strategic by planning means many take this as a strategy when it is being deliberate and rolling up or into one company-wide strategy.

A strategy is not a list of tactics or channels its the action plan for the business, a strategy is being able to:

  • 🧠 Think 5 years ahead, understand the lay of the land,
  • 📝 Plan 3 years with firm bets and beliefs of where your market and products are going
  • 💪 Act 1 year, being absolutely ruthless for the year head and the exact actions you will take.

The playbook is an essential part of connecting this all together.

Moving forward focus on removing the confusion around strategy and tactics.
Enable teams to understand they are part of the bigger company-wide strategy, their plans of actions are essential in company success, however, ensure they roll up and align with the core pillars you have to serve and hit and should all be found and updated in the centralised playbook.

An action to take is to write the beliefs and bets out, serving a small number of pillars and then ask the teams to create their plan of action and ensure it reads simply for the wider business so it can fit into a company-wide playbook for the year ahead.

One recommendation I have for all of my consultancy clients is to have one person who leads the playbook project and ensures update are made and communicated.

Thanks and have a good week,


PS, Take a read of its time for management pods.

Leaders Letter Newsletter

Leaders Letter 5 – Beliefs And Bets

Beliefs and Bets


Dear Leaders,

I hope you had a positive weekend and ready for the week ahead.

Believe it or not, it is now Q3 and with more businesses opening up again, this week’s message is to revisit your beliefs and bets for the rest of 2020.

This year has been a challenge for everyone and business right now feel like they are constantly being dealt bad hands in poker.

There is a lot of luck needed but calculated risks and understanding of the game is essential.

I am currently reading Annie Duke’s ‘Thinking in Bets‘ and it aligns so well in business and in the current situation.

Beliefs are key to any business succeeding, what do you believe to be true, what do you believe will happen, where do you believe the industry will go and why.

Your bets should be the 3-5 big bets you are betting on and have confidence in delivering for the rest of the year.

Revisit the top ten (yes 10) beliefs, revisit your top 3 bets for the rest of the year and clearly and concisely articulate your belief and bets to the whole organisation.

Have a home and hub explaining the beliefs and bets and get creative in having a 101, FAQ’s and ensure it rolls up to your Focus Metric.

Focus On: Achieving buy-in by reintroducing the beliefs and bets and talking collectively about these.

Ensure everyone understands the ten beliefs and three to five bets, ask for total commitment to deliver these and by the deadline you and your teams create.

The mid way of every year is typically when people take their breaks and holidays so fatigue is setting in and this is the time for leaders to step up and energise the team.

Happily let me know how you map out your B&B’s and if you have any troubles, happily email me for support.

Thanks and have a great week ahead.

Danny Denhard