Strategy may “be dead”, as Kevin Roberts, the CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi Worldwide, recently claimed - The Drum, by Richard Draycott, April 25, 2012 – Or could it simply be that the process for making strategical decisions need to undergo some major Reconstructive Surgery?
Because of the fast paced development in our society, the role of strategical thinking in an Innovation and Business development process, need to be remodeled to fit a more flexible, real time based and ‘Now-oriented’ context.
Grounds For Rethinking Strategy
Traditionally a well executed strategy provides you with a descriptive roadmap, showcasing your current position and gently pointing you in the direction in which you are intended to go.
“The essence of strategy is choosing what not to do”.
― Michael E. Porter
Your strategy is meant infuse you with some kind of confidence, not to confuse or make you feel like you were lost in the woods.
A great strategy should help to clear your mind from unnecessary distractions.
Pressed for Time – Always On
These days it seem like our time perspective is being compressed into an ‘instant on’ mindset, creating confusion and uncertainty in many cases. No more months of planning and preparation. Weeks, or even days, are now the measurement for turning your ideas into something tangible, proving their value.
What really matters and counts is your ability to adapt and transform disadvantageous circumstances into opportunities. You need to be prepared to execute on these opportunities to create some kind of intrinsic value perceived by the market space.
I guess while trying to manage your career under such a rate of transformative circumstances and conditions, it is easy to be mislead or misguided, thinking strategy serves no purpose and therefore claiming ‘strategy dead’.
No Later Than Now
Living in an instant-on, Real-Time based world where “The Now” is perceived as our only focus of reference, every decision we make seem to be based on our current situation, much less aiming our vision toward the future.
With rapid development and emerging technologies quickly evolving on a global scale, erasing the borders which before held as a frame of reference, there is really not much point in trying to foresee what is coming around the corner – or is it?
It’s no coincidence that terms like ‘disruptive’ and ‘pivoting’ are the buzzwords of our times. But does that mean we need to throw out strategical thinking and long term based decision making?
I firmly believe this would be a fundamental mistake and a serious error of judgement!
Driving blindfolded at the speed of light may give you a rush, but the risk of ending up in a crash will be more likely than reaching the destination we dream of.
Simon Sinek, April 2012 Creative Mornings, New York | startwithwhy.com
What Do You Care?
The fundamental question that we need to ask ourselves asked is:
- Do we care enough about where we might end up?
Well, let us for the sake of reasoning, putting our reason to the test, pretend for just a moment that We Do Care.
- How can we upgrade our existing practice of strategy to be more in sync and in tune with what is currently going on around us?
Could we perhaps craft our strategical tools to become more like a compass needle, pointing us in the direction that will bring us to our destination safely?
How about changing the rules of interaction?
“If the human race wishes to have a prolonged and indefinite period of material prosperity, they have only got to behave in a peaceful and helpful way toward one another” – Winston Churchill
Purpose and behavior are the corner stones of any well crafted strategy. Let’s synchronize these two concepts in order to create a more streamlined arena for strategical decision making.
Monitor targeted behaviors to get an idea of the impact that your products and services will have. Visualize the end game for your target group. It’s not important what they want or need, but WHY the people you’re aiming to reach out to behave and act in a certain way.
A great number of Social Media tools are readily available to assist you in performing this task. Use them wisely and don’t waste any chance of learning. Listen attentively to what actually is going on!
Ask yourself; which are the behaviors that you wish to promote and will feel comfortable with?
Just remember, those are the behaviors that you can expect from people around you in a near future. Would those be acceptable for you, your family and friends.
- Are you able to live with such behavior?
Don’t forget; engaging in behaviors that you cannot sign of on, as an individual, will clearly cost both you as an individual and the brand you represent, dearly in the end.
Building Capital of Trust
In a world where transparency successively is becoming more important each single day, trust is most probably the greatest capital, or value, that you can build, both for yourself, your brand and for the world you are trying to change. Treasure it! Because it’s the only capital that you can exchange for emotions and engagement, which in turn help you build brand value!
Utilizing more transparent guiding principles hint at a more sustainable approach toward strategical development. Infusing this type of conceptual thinking in your strategical processes will give your actions purpose and meaning.
“You’ve got to think about big things while you’re doing small things, so that all the small things go in the right direction.”
― Alvin Toffler
Automatically this line of thought and action will encourage a strategical vision driven by core values and beliefs. You will no longer be a victim to circumstances, rather you will gain responsibility that can be used for a greater cause.
Simply exert yourself to Do Great Things as Jason Rosentein, the Co-founder of Asana writes in his post on TechCrunch. Inspiring and heartfelt post to read!
This type of rapid transformation will of course create great demands and strain on your own organization. As a manager you need to coach your team to be prepared to continuously re-learn, adapt and transform their daily work processes and schedules.
Use your managerial skills and talent to learn how to build a lean and agile organization, working in continuous flux, capturing every single opportunity that may come your way.
- No slacking!
The next crucial step is mapping out key learnings to drive your value proposition.
Utilizing cloud based Enterprise Social Networks and applications your team can momentarily become more engaged and produce value for the community.
How to become a Stream Wizard
In our forthcoming blog post: ‘Conquering the Stream – Mastering the Fine Art of Content Curation’, we will dive deeper and investigate the tools that will help you manage your path towards ‘Transformational Entrepreneurship’ | ‘Transformational Entrepreneurship: Where Technology Meets Societal Impact’ by Max Marmer, April 23, 2012.
Jan Friman, Founder and CEO (Chief Experience Officer), Inforganic Labs