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Tactical Problem Resolution = Money in the Bank

Tactics are underrated.  Problem solving is taken for granted.  Business leaders want to hire executives who are strategic, who take a big picture view, who can make long term plans, guide and mentor others in the plan execution, and not get bogged down in details.

Interestingly, when I ask high level candidates about their accomplishments, often the stories are about tactical problem resolution – seeing an issue, taking input from other involved people, and going beyond the obvious to come up with a solution that no one else has seen so far.  These stories range from turning around unhappy clients, to finding ways to save money quickly, to clearing obstacles, to simply making things run more smoothly and efficiently.

Don’t get me wrong – I’m all in favor of executives having strong strategic capability.  But when I hear the stories about how people have made a difference to their companies, it is often about this simple skill of tactical problem resolution.  Getting from point A to point B is often the key to revenue.  Getting that customer satisfied, moving the product out the door; these are the mundane but critical things that bring in the bucks, and keep the door open at many companies.

So here is a tip of the hat to tactics – and those who are good at solving problems.  Thank someone at your company today for helping to keep the cash register ringing.