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Common Mistakes in Strategy
What are the common mistakes in Strategy? Why are some companies more successful in their strategy than others?
Itís glamorous to talk about strategy, so letís talk a lot about it. Itís hard work to implement strategy, so letís delegate to someone else to do it. Itís dirty job to evaluate the effectiveness of the strategy, so letís forget about it. These are the common phenomena of strategy planning that should be avoided.
Reacting to Situation
Some companies establish strategies because of the need to react to situation. Although it may solve some of the immediate issues, it loses the long term prospective of strategy planning. Reacting to situation always put the company one step behind the competition and ends up in disadvantage position.
Companies should establish Corporate Vision to guide its strategy. Good Corporate Vision should be Clear, Inspiring, Meaningful, Measurable and Easy to communicate.
One Man Army
Some top management plans and executes their strategy all by themselves. The danger of the "One Man Army" style of strategy planning is that they are likely to have blind spots that are not checked by another parties. Critical issues may be ignored and may cause the failure of the strategy. The more effective strategic planning is group planning. This also makes the execution of the strategy easier as the key managers understand the strategy and will be more committed since they participate in decision making process.
Planning by Intuition
Intuition is useful in predicting the future environment. However, it is dangerous to plan just base on intuition. Events that are seen on the surface may be very deceiving. When possible, decision made during strategic planning should be justified by hard facts and data. This also helps to prevent emotion and biasness affecting the strategy making.
Communicate, communicate and communicate. No point having a fantastic strategy when the people who will be executing the strategy do not know about it. No matter how secretive the strategy is, your competitors will know about it as soon as you start to executive it. It is often more important to focus on the customers than on your competitors unless the timing of competitorsí reaction is a critical success factor of the strategy. Communicating the strategy also build sense of mission and purpose among the key strategy players.
Talk about Strategy
Strategy making is not just fun and glamorous. It is also hard work plus dirty work. It is important to communicate but just talking about it will not make it works. There must be complete game plan. For strategy to work, it must have the tactical plans and project plans to execute the strategy. All these must form a complete game plan to ensure the success of the strategy.
Lack of Follow up
Milestones and check points should be set up to periodically monitor the progress and effectiveness of the strategy. Contingency plans should be worked out to handle changes in the environment. Do not hope to be lucky that what you plan will work perfectly. Be prepared for the unexpected and be open to adjustment with your strategy if it is not working according to plan while maintaining the long term focus.
Who is Responsible
Do not afraid to delegate specific tactical plan and project plan to competent and committed key managers. Set clear objects and monitor the progress. Motivated staff is key component to the success of all corporate strategy.