Here is a sobering thought: every half-hearted “yes” to something that’s not helping you achieve your goals is a concrete “no” to more valuable activities. Most managers practice passive disengagement, which means instead of pulling the plug on projects, activities and tactics that are no longer adding value, we continue to passively allow them to occupy our time and attention. Research shows that 80 percent of managers believe their senior leaders fail to kill failing initiatives quickly enough. Do you?

Replace the passive approach with strategic thinking and active disengagement—cutting things off from your time and attention that are no longer priorities. The dirty secret of being strategic within an organization is you have to be willing to say no and deprioritize things that aren’t directly helping you and your team achieve your goals and execute your strategies.

In my new business graphic novel, StrategyMan Vs. The Anti-Strategy Squad: Using Strategic Thinking to Defeat Bad Strategy and Save Your Plan, which was named Best Strategy Book of 2018 by Axiom Business Book Awards, the villain that represents this issue is Dr. Yes.

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