A Framework for Strategy?

The art of forming a strategy, or thinking strategically is a skill required in many levels in today’s complex world, but it is especially important to leaders. In today’s quick shifting external and, sometimes, internal environment, a good strategy can be the only base, a company can be founded on, for achieving its objectives. But a good strategy, needs good foundations and for that you should base its formation and its execution at a solid background! A Framework for Strategy

What a Strategy Is?

The strategy is a lot of things for different people! For some is a road path towards success (if you can easily define that!), for other people is a mean towards specific ends, for other executives in business area, is a way of gaining a company a competitive advantage in its niche market. Every one of this approaches is true and valid, and all legitimately can participate in a more coherent definition of strategy itself! But in its simplest and elementary form, a strategy is nothing more than a very high-level and coherent (simple or complex) answer to a very simple question: How me/we (a person, a company, an organization, etc) can achieve the objectives I/we have set? The answer to this question, the destination that the question lead us to, the means/resources that would help up fulfill its mandate, is the basic form of the strategy, either in a personal or/and professional level.

How A Business Strategy Can Be Developed and Implemented?

In professional/business situations, the formulation of a strategy is much more urgent and pressing, since the adaptation of an organization or company to its external or internal changing conditions can mark the survival or not of the given organization. The environment, modern companies and corporations operate in, is a constant changing environment with many shown or hidden parameters and variables to form the final output in any given situation. The aftermath of such a tag war between a given organization and its operational ecosystem is not always in favor of the organization and sometimes the pressure of the market (lower prices, market shares, gaining of competitive advantages, forming of gaining niche markets, etc) can deteriorate the present position of a company! Usually, the only parameter can differentiate the surviving company from many other companies that are not longer are around anymore, is the how the particular company responds to the market challenges via a successful strategy! For this reason, it is essential, today, the employment of a more structured framework for a strategy that would cover effectively both the strategy formation process and the strategy execution!

A Framework for Effective Strategy!

A company or an organization, today, in order to develop and employ a successful strategy in an operational environment, should follow a well established framework, that would provide to the company enhanced capabilities, towards its competitive market. Of course, a company’s strategy is an ongoing work, trying to foresee and responds effectively to the continuous changes of the business environment. Such framework (adapted from the book: Strategic Management: Concepts and Cases), in today’s competitive conditions, should be comprised of the consideration and implementation of the following phases:

  • Phase 1: Develop a Strategic Vision,
  • Phase 2: Set objectives,
  • Phase 3: Develop a strategy for achieving the set vision and the objectives have been set,
  • Phase 4: Implementation and execution of the strategy selected,
  • Phase 5: Evaluation, Tweaking and adaptation of the selected strategy in the changing market conditions.

This framework for the development, employment and adjustment of the business’ strategy to the shifting conditions can help a lot of companies to review their view about strategy and employ more robust and well tuned strategies in accordance to the challenges of their environment.

Question: Do you think this framework can help you shape a better strategy for your company/organization? do you find this framework for strategy, useful at developing and employing personal strategies, or not?

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    Takis Athanassiou is an IT Consultant, Blogger, Trainer & Writer, active in the areas of leadership, business consulting, e-Learning and social media. He aims at the development of people, business and assets! You can check out his blog, add him in Google+ and follow him on Twitter.

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