Step One: Starting Strategic Thinking With Why

As you know, this month, I’m writing about developing a culture of coaching for your organization as a prequel for my upcoming book, Who’s Running This Farm (Next)? The first step is about strategy or rather moving toward a focus on strategic thinking. Where I often begin this with coaching clients and CEO’s is around the concept of WHY. Why does this effort matter? What is the real purpose?

Starting with why is very obvious for some but for others it can take some real soul searching. If your why isn’t immediately obvious, don’t get discouraged and skip this process. Instead try looking at Why through the lens of something of which you are probably well aware –your pain points.


What are Your Pain Points?

Like acupuncture for decision-making, I use the questions below during executive coaching conversations with agribusiness execs and farmers alike and they move the needle when a leader seeks clarity. Take a look at this abbreviated version and see if it helps you get thinking about the planning YOU need to do.


explanation Where Does It Hurt? 5 Q’s to Identify Your Pain

  1. Why is this business my work?
  2. Am I in the career of my choosing?
  3. What is the most satisfying element of my career?
  4. What is my greatest fear about the future?
  5. What important business decision or action am I putting off?


What are your results?

Suddenly feeling the need for a couple of Tylenol™ or a stiff drink (or both)? Very good, that was the point, so consider the painful effort in the camp of the exercise slogan ‘no pain-no gain’. Sometimes we get so good at tolerating our normal, even a normal that doesn’t serve us now, we just do it anyway. What are you tolerating? Why?


ACT Like a Pro Out There!