Mariella Galea - LinkedIn

Michele Peresso Group Head of Human Resources (HR) Mariella Galea on Monday highlighted the crucial link between operational and strategic focus when leading a business, as aligning the two can be particularly difficult.

“One of the greatest challenges in leadership is the simultaneous focus on the operational and strategic”, she said, before explaining that the relationship between the two elements is “fundamental”.

She added that while it could be argued that one can be operational without being strategic, it results in “hard work without direction”.

“One of the important skills in leadership is working and keeping the two elements aligned, both in one’s work and in the performance of the team,” Ms Galea remarked.

As a result, she proceeds to pinpoint five key considerations for business leaders in order to achieve this alignment.

Firstly, she explains that it is important to “be brave enough to have a vision, a direction, however small or big this may be”.

Afterwards, business leaders need to find ways of aligning the operational segment with that vision.

“Take time out, be it ten minutes during the day or dedicated hours every week or month, to focus on the desired direction and the evaluation of the operational alignment to this vision, changing ways of working along the way,” Ms Galea continued.

She added that communication is integral, both with one’s peers, and the team as a whole, asking questions such as: “Where are we headed? Why? How are we doing?”

Lastly, business leaders also need to evaluate the performance regularly, she said, adding that this involves including an “assessment of the operational side of things in line with the agreed direction”.

“And yes, there will be days when it feels that the daily work is quite overwhelming – most days in fact – but keep your head up and your eyes looking forward to the place you want to get to, until you get there,” she concluded.

Ms Galea is an HR specialist who has partnered with various leaders and managers in the past through HR management and development projects. She joined retail importing company Michele Peresso Group as Head of HR last year, and is also an HR Consultant and Trainer at HR TalentLEAD. Over the course of her career, she has led and handled projects in HR, leadership development, training programmes, employee engagement, succession planning, and various other areas. Ms Galea holds a Master of Science in HR Management and Development from University of Leicester, and a Bachelor of Education from University of Malta.

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