Friday, July 11, 2014

A quick route to building a strategy ...

Need a strategy? Can't be bothered to understand your landscape? Don't care about situational awareness or gameplay? Need it fast? Minimal effort? No problem!

Take the following words ... 

digital first, agile, open, innovative, efficiency, competitive advantage, ecosystem, networked, collaborative,  learning organisation, social media, revolution, cloud based, big data, secure, internet of things, growth, value, customer focused, digital business, disruptive, data leaders, big data, insight from data, platform, sustainable, revolution, culture.

... then add some other words in-between and you're done! 

Sounds too hard?  Ok, just add the words here.

Our strategy is [..]. We will lead a [..] effort of the market through our use of [..] and [..]  to build a [..]. By being both [..] and [..], our [..] approach will drive [..] throughout the organisation. Synergies between our [..] and [..] will enable us to capture the upside by becoming [..] in a [..] world. These transformations combined with [..] due to our [..] will create a [..] through [..] and [..].

Still too hard? Ok, these are some I made earlier. Pick one.

Strategy 1
Our strategy is customer focused. We will lead a disruptive effort of the market through our use of innovative social media and big data to build a collaborative cloud based ecosystem. By being both digital first and agile, our open approach will drive efficiency throughout the organisation. Synergies between our culture revolution and networked learning organisation will enable us to capture the upside by becoming data leaders in a digital business world. These transformations combined with insight from data due to our internet of things platform will create a sustainable competitive advantage through growth and value.

OR

Strategy 2
Our strategy is collaborative growth. We will lead a customer focused effort of the market through our use of digital business and internet of things ecosystem to build a cloud based revolution. By being both innovative and open, our social media approach will drive competitive advantage throughout the organisation. Synergies between our data leaders and agile culture will enable us to capture the upside by becoming networked in a big data world. These transformations combined with disruptive insight from data due to our digital first platform will create a learning organisation through  value  and efficiency.

OR

Strategy 3
Our strategy is innovative revolution. We will lead a growth effort of the market through our use of customer focused competitive advantage and disruptive social media to build a collaborative digital business. By being both data leaders and cloud based, our ecosystem approach will drive insight from data  throughout the organisation. Synergies between our platform and open culture will enable us to capture the upside by becoming digital first in a networked world. These transformations combined with value due to our efficiency will create a sustainable learning organisation through agile and big data.

Worried it's not big enough? Print some random posts, reports and graphs from the internet, add a couple of pages from the Art of War, call it background material.

Worried it has no value? Send a random person a gargantuan cheque with a note on which strategy you liked. As soon as they cash it, record it as 'consultancy fees' and assume whatever you want. As we all know, the bigger the cheque the more value ... right?

... my work is done.

Or alternatively, try and understand your landscape BEFORE building a strategy.


--- Saturday 12th July

What started as a joke has struck a bit of a nerve with a couple of people. I've already received some examples of real company strategy that seem painfully close. If you're aware of a real company strategy that mimics the above then please let me know. You can DM me on twitter. No need to reveal the company name, I'm interested in the content and how pervasive the duplication of memes / phrases and other terms are. I'll publish any conclusions I find here.

Also, thanks to Benoit I've been made aware of this HBR article on 'How to Execute a 15-Word Strategy Statement'. Now, there's nothing wrong with brevity, in fact brief and specific statements with clear understanding of the landscape are good - "Hold the Persians at the hot gates and cut off retreat with a naval assault".

However, brief and vague statements without an understanding of the landscape, where to attack and why one space over another are not helpful even if they are fifteen words long  - "Let us be agile, fight more efficiently and use innovation to disrupt the Persian army"

--- Tuesday 22nd July

This is brilliant, an auto strategy generator created by Bill West. Guaranteed to mimic most others competitors :-)
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