What is strategy?

mastermind

So many definitions, so much complexity. Nobody really knows what strategy really is.

So, what is strategy?

To me strategy is not pursuing a detailed plan step by step, it is finding or creating options that give me an advantage at any moment.

Let me explain why:

The world is full of people looking for a secret formula to success and power. They don’t want to think on their own; they just want the recipe to follow. For this very reason they are attracted to the idea of strategy.

In their minds strategy is a series of steps to be followed toward a goal. They want these steps spelled out for them by some expert or guru. Believing in the power of imitation, they want to know what others have done before. Their maneuvers in life are as mechanical as their thinking. They are predictable.

The essence of strategy is not to carry out a brilliant plan that proceeds in steps; it is to put yourself in situations where you have more options than everyone else. Instead of going for A as the single right answer, true strategy is positioning yourself to be able to do A, B or C depending on the situation.

Our society values people who have the right answer but in reality there is no single right answer, there are many. At any moment one approach can be better than the other, being aware of this is what separates true strategists from the one’s following a game plan.

Do you agree? What’s your definition of strategy? This is an important topic, let’s get a discussion going!

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  • What is strategy? http://ff.im/-9nUql

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  • New Blog Post: What is strategy? – What’s wrong with strategy? So many definitions, so much complexity. Nobody real… http://ow.ly/15Ttnx

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  • New Blog Post: What is strategy? – What’s wrong with strategy? So many definitions, so much complexity. Nobody real… http://ow.ly/15Ttny

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  • What is strategy?:

     
    What’s wrong with strategy? So many definitions, so much complexity. Nobody really.. http://bit.ly/12JO8E

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  • Great wisdom RT @jorgebarba: What is strategy?: What’s wrong with strategy? So many definitions, so much complexity. http://bit.ly/12JO8E

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  • Commented on the Game Changer article “What is Strategy,” http://ow.ly/15Ttny

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  • Real Options modified the strategy concept in that they provide those downstream options in your portfolio, as well as the criteria for knowing when and whether a particual option is available. This strategic options approach was intended to balance against forecast accuracy, and your inablity to forecast.

  • Real Options modified the strategy concept in that they provide those downstream options in your portfolio, as well as the criteria for knowing when and whether a particual option is available. This strategic options approach was intended to balance against forecast accuracy, and your inablity to forecast.

  • Yes, I agree. I have had so many consultants try to convince me if only I follow their plan , x will be successful. But context is everything. Success comes when we are nimble and able to see opportunities. We do need focus, and can get scattered if not careful.

  • Yes, I agree. I have had so many consultants try to convince me if only I follow their plan , x will be successful. But context is everything. Success comes when we are nimble and able to see opportunities. We do need focus, and can get scattered if not careful.

  • Re: What is strategy? http://ff.im/-9pKIk

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  • Commented on the Game Changer post “What is Strategy,” http://bit.ly/C8Wzv

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  • Hi Christine, I like to say that the future belongs to those that are fluid, fast and nonlinear. But as you mentioned this is also a balancing act or we risk going nowhere.

    Thanks for taking the time to comment!

    Jorge.

  • Hi Christine, I like to say that the future belongs to those that are fluid, fast and nonlinear. But as you mentioned this is also a balancing act or we risk going nowhere.

    Thanks for taking the time to comment!

    Jorge.

  • Hi David,

    Great point. I know Microsoft dislikes forecasts and manages uncertainty using the options-based strategic model you mention. I know more than a few people who don't agree with everything they do, but they are probably one of the most strategic corporations out there.

    They don't pursue one single strategy but many at the same time.

    Thanks for taking the time to comment.

    Jorge.

  • Hi David,

    Great point. I know Microsoft dislikes forecasts and manages uncertainty using the options-based strategic model you mention. I know more than a few people who don't agree with everything they do, but they are probably one of the most strategic corporations out there.

    They don't pursue one single strategy but many at the same time.

    Thanks for taking the time to comment.

    Jorge.

  • Moore said that his technology adoption lifecycle (TALC) is not a clock, but I see it as an asynchronous clock. It can inform strategy, but not the timeline of strategy realization.

    I've reframed the TALC as a collection of Poisson games, and as a hierarchical network in graph theory which leads to a power law or long-tail interpretation. Plenty to think about. Plenty to expect. When becomes the central issue.

    I've worked in a company that died, because it consumed its market too fast. If the transition to late market is going to happen during a quarter, work that into the forecasted expectations you are going to give the financial markets. If you are going to slow down your sales funnel, do not do that until you have provided a quarterly forecast that incorporates that transaction. Yes, wait. Plan. Train, but don't do it right now, if you didn't project the reduced volume, or consider this an exit.

  • Moore said that his technology adoption lifecycle (TALC) is not a clock, but I see it as an asynchronous clock. It can inform strategy, but not the timeline of strategy realization.

    I've reframed the TALC as a collection of Poisson games, and as a hierarchical network in graph theory which leads to a power law or long-tail interpretation. Plenty to think about. Plenty to expect. When becomes the central issue.

    I've worked in a company that died, because it consumed its market too fast. If the transition to late market is going to happen during a quarter, work that into the forecasted expectations you are going to give the financial markets. If you are going to slow down your sales funnel, do not do that until you have provided a quarterly forecast that incorporates that transaction. Yes, wait. Plan. Train, but don't do it right now, if you didn't project the reduced volume, or consider this an exit.

  • The future belongs to those that are fluid, fast and nonlinear. http://bit.ly/aG2St #strategy #innovation

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  • Jeannine Ghaleb

    Strategy for me is to know what you want, know the purple you are dealing with, have multiple solutions and go to Win!!!

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