"when there is a separation of belief and action, as is frequent in organizations because of delegation, precise implementation has benefits beyond the well-known effect of enabling exploitation of good strategies. It also enables the discovery of better strategies by allowing more effective learning from feedback on the value of current strategies.
This is because precise implementation solves the attribution problem ... allowing easier rejection of poor strategies (and possibly a search for better ones), as well as making better use of existing good strategies. These two benefits come at the expense of any potential gains from bottom-up exploration that poor implementation might have allowed.
A second advantage of precise implementation is that it prevents excessive exploration at the aggregate organizational level because of the inadvertent exploration introduced by the imperfect communication of strategy from senior managers to subordinates. If the downward communication process of strategy and upward observation of action is unavoidably noisy, then improving implementation may help to improve organizational performance by reducing what is, in effect, suboptimally excessive exploration. While miscommunication and observation error may seem like two sides of the same coin (as both result from the separation of beliefs and actions), there are fundamental distinctions between the two. Imperfect communication leverages bottom-up exploration, but does not contribute any exploration by itself: it merely “undampens” bottom-up exploration that would have resulted from perfect communication of strategy.
Observation error, on the other hand, is itself a significant source of exploration for the organization. However, while the effect of miscommunication on the knowledge of the strategist is benign, observation errors introduce biases. The implications is that a strategist who is a great communicator but cannot observe the quality of implementation may be more harmful to the organization than one who is a poor communicator but a good observer of implementation performance, assuming the same imperfect strategy ex ante for both.
Third, precise implementation also prevents excessive exploration at the organizational level when top managers are also exploring—and indeed this is particularly important when there are observation errors and miscommunication of strategy.
Under these circumstances, there is a strong implementation imperative. Indeed we can say that for the same cost of bottom-up and top-down exploration, top-down exploration (and a strong implementation imperative) is to be preferred rather than vice versa. This is primarily because the communication of strategy is effectively a dampener on bottom-up exploration. These benefits of implementation as a stimulant to organizational adaptation suggest a rationale for the implementation imperative, in the sense that increasing implementation precision may be useful even with bad initial strategies propounded by the senior managers for each of these reasons. Viewing strategy implementation as a learning process for the strategist thus generates a fundamentally different insight about the value of implementation: unlike the static case, when the intuition says,
“good beliefs, good implementation; bad beliefs, bad implementation”, with learning by the strategist, precise implementation can be useful even with bad beliefs"
Trechos retirados de "The implementation imperative: Why one should implement even imperfect strategies perfectly" de Eucman Lee e Phanish Puranam.