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Don’t look in a mirror, look out the window

December 5th, 2014

downloadHBR recently posted a terrific article titled “A List Of Goals Is Not A Strategy

The key premise is many managers, when tasked with defining a strategy, instead start focusing on KPIs and designing solutions to maximize those KPIs. They focus on the goals and tactics but forget about actually creating a strategy to set the context for what they want to acheive.

Starting by identifying the stakeholders, what you want from them, and what they want from you is a great first step. Understanding what your stakeholders truly want by asking and not just guessing (or assuming they’re the same things you want) should be the primary focus. I’ve heard it compared to “Creating a strategy by looking out the window, not looking in a mirror.”

Crystal clear understanding of what your winning aspiration is, where you will play, how you’ll win and what capabilities you’ll need to win there are also key pillars.

As one of my mentors said recently in a strategy session, “If we’re not making hard choices on what to do and what not to do, we’re not creating a strategy!”

Categories: Strategy
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