April Fools’ Strategy

April 1, 2015

In an effort to improve mankind, or at least the state of business strategy, I hereby declare April 1 Strategy Fools’ Day. We are hijacking the day of hoaxes and harmless pranks to shine a light on the well-intentioned, but misguided and misinformed attempts to create, communicate and execute strategy. So here is a condensed list of foolish strategies with…

Strategic Thinking Starts At the Top…Or It Doesn’t

February 16, 2012

With a flurry of activity each day, we hope to accomplish the tasks that will enable us to reach our goals. Ideally, that flurry of activity is preceded and then interspersed with strategic thinking. Thinking strategically means carving out time to consider the current context, or situation we’re in, identifying insights that will lead to new value for customers and…

Those headwinds, they are a blow’in

July 29, 2011

Good people of the business world, take cover! No, it’s not a tsunami, or hurricane or even a tropical storm. It’s the new scapegoat: headwinds. In a Wall Street Journal article entitled, “Sprint Loses More Customers,” Sprint Nextel CFO Joseph Euteneuer said, “We faced a number of competitive headwinds that became more pronounced in the second quarter.” Earlier in the…

Rethink

March 4, 2011

An article entitled “As Big Boxes Shrink, They Also Rethink,” was published this week in the Wall Street Journal describing the move by retailers to downsize stores. Perhaps the need to rethink wouldn’t be so significant now if they had taken the time to actually think in the first place. One of the surest signs of a strategy-less organization is…

Are You Competitive?

February 7, 2011

Are you outperforming your competition? If an avalanche of excuses is the first thing that comes to mind, then the answer is most likely no. When it comes to market share, revenue, profits, new sales, or other key metrics, at some point your level of competitiveness must be honestly assessed. A Wall Street Journal article reported cellphone maker Nokia’s quarterly…

The “Other” Strategists

June 11, 2010

When it comes to developing business strategy, we often leave that up to the business people. But what about the “others?” You know, the folks in technical areas critical to an organization’s success. These are the people with expertise in areas such as research & development, clinical development and information technology. Do they need to be strategic? If we define…

“What’s the Plan, Stan?”: Step 4 in Resource Allocation

January 26, 2010

After a determination has been made where resources should be allocated to provide the greatest differentiated value to customers, a plan for leading and monitoring the execution is needed. An article published in the Wall Street Journal yesterday entitled “Strategic Plans Lose Favor,” discussed how the traditional strategic plan is becoming obsolete. Any strategic plan over ten pages in a…