Business Halftime: Adjustment #3

July 27, 2010

Halftime Adjustment #3: Decisions Once a football coach has assessed the current context, evaluated the success and impact of behaviors, they must then make decisions for the second half. Do I stay with the starting quarterback or switch to the backup? Should we change the defensive scheme to put more bodies on the line and force them to throw the…

Business Halftime: Adjustment #2

July 23, 2010

Halftime Adjustment #2: Behaviors The second factor a football coach will consider at halftime is the behaviors of their team and the opponent. Was the running game or passing game more effective? How has the opponent’s special teams impacted the game? Are the offensive and defensive lines blocking effectively or are they the proverbial sieve? As any competent job interviewer…

Business Halftime: What’s Your Score?

July 16, 2010

“There was a signature to a Bill Belichick team: Whatever the opposition did in the first half, his team tended to take away in the second half.” David Halberstam on the three-time Super Bowl Champion Head Coach of the New England Patriots football team Good coaches in any sport come into a game with a solid plan to win. Great…

Strat Plan

July 13, 2010

I recently had the honor of working with five-time Grammy Award winning hip hop artist Stra-Da-Gee. I consulted on the lyrics for his new song “Strat Plan” which describes the follies of strategic planning. Take a listen to the rap below and see how many of the strategic planning traps your organization has fallen into in the past. Strat Plan…

Strategic Thinking Traps 8 and 9

July 9, 2010

8. Status Quo Popular adages such as “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” “Don’t rock the boat,” and “Let sleeping dogs lie” all feed into the natural tendency to prefer the status quo. Time and again, research has proven that when individuals have the option of doing something new or staying with the status quo, they overwhelmingly stay with…

Strategic Thinking Traps 5-7

July 7, 2010

5. Forecasting The mere act of attempting to estimate or calculate something in advance should give you pause: amateurs—in some cases monkeys—routinely out-perform experts in meteorology and the stock market. There are several traps to be aware of when forecasting in business. One is over-confidence. As human beings, we’re prone to overestimating our talents, which you could argue is also…

Strategic Thinking Traps: Anchor’s Away!

July 5, 2010

2.  Anchors In making decisions, the mind tends to give initial information or impressions a disproportionate amount of weight. This tendency is referred to as an “anchor.” The anchor jades the strategic thinking process because it starts the process at an artificially high or low point. Most commonly, anchors take the form of last year’s strategic plan or this year’s financial…

Gotcha! The Strategic Thinking Traps

June 30, 2010

“A smooth sea never made a skillful mariner, neither do uninterrupted prosperity and success qualify for usefulness and happiness. The storms of adversity, like those of the ocean, rouse the faculties, and excite the invention, prudence, skill and fortitude of the voyager.” —Thomas L. Haines, author Even the best-intentioned strategists are occasionally caught up in the undertow of flawed strategic…

It’s Lonely At the Top

June 28, 2010

If strategy were a physical summit in your company, business unit or functional area, would you be the only one standing at the top? For many leaders, the depressing answer is ‘yes.’ While you may have built a mountain of expertise shaped by strategic insights, the great leaders are the ones who help the rest of their team scale those…

Like the back of my…

June 24, 2010

Please complete the following ten sentences about your spouse, partner or significant other: The first time we met, they wore… Their favorite flavor of birthday cake is…. The name of the high school they attended is… If the vacation options were a sandy beach, a snowy mountain or visiting a foreign country, they’d prefer… When it comes to movies, if…