Thinking About Strategy – what are your thoughts….?

Thinking About Strategy - What are your Thoughts?

Strategic planning, simple……. 

We simply want to go from here to here, and this is how we’ll do it – correct?”

So what could possibly go wrong? 

Firstly, let’s take a look at some of the organised thinking behind strategic planning any analysis.

What is:

  1. Your Strategic Position?
  2. Your Strategic Options?
  3. Your Strategy in Action/Strategic Execution?
and how do you a) analyse each of these items and b) how do they fit together in a strategic plan?

“Surely, if there are only three things to consider this isn’t that difficult?”

Perhaps it’s useful to consider that these are only the entrances to the labyrinth, because behind each one are another five key elements that also need to be built in to your strategic modelling.

Let’s start with item 1 above.

1) Your Strategic Position

This examines where you are, and where you might be relative to:

  • The macro environment
  • Your own industry or sector 
  • Your organisation’s stakeholders
  • Your organisational resources
  • Your organisational culture
hang about, we only want to from here to here…this is starting to become complex……

Well, yes it is quite “complex”, because behind each of the five key elements are sub-elements that also need tools to analyse and understand them.

For example – how do you examine the macro and geopolitical environment and then apply those learnings to their impact upon your organisation, its strategy and future?

How really au fait are you with your own industry or sector?  How closely do you monitor it and your competition?

Stakeholders?  Shareholders? What’s the difference, or is one a subset of the other?  

How do you a) identify b) map your stakeholders?  How do you communicate with them?  Who do you prioritise and when?

Who (or what) are your key stakeholders.  Can stakeholders ever be a “what”, rather than a “who”?

Organisational resources; what are they, where are they, who are they?  

How can they be leveraged to enhance your strategic position and strategy execution?

Your organisation’s culture? 

Any clues?  

What is your organisation’s cultural web and how might it impact your strategic analysis and planning.

Strategy execution is, by definition, implementation of some sort of change, and it’s likely to be significant.  

Is your organisation’s culture set-up for or likely to be resistant to change?  

What can you do if it’s the latter, because “cultural change” is not a trivial matter, and can easily end in tears.

And so far, we’ve only scratched at the tip of the iceberg.

In  Part 2 of this Insights series, we’ll look at considerations around item 2 –  Strategic Options.

So, already, and for the moment, there’s quite a lot to think about, not least that getting strategy right is absolutely critical to you and your organisation.



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Barry Eustance CMgr MCMI

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