Wednesday, June 12, 2019

The Perspectives of Strategy Thinking - Planning - Action- Effect

Organizations that thrive on managing strategic thinking - planning - action -effect cycle with consistency and predictability are excellent at maintaining business growth momentum and achieving higher-than-expected business results.

Strategic thinking is about change and starting the end in mind. The strategic part of the planning process is the continual attention to current changes in the organization and its external environment. Action is always part of a good strategy. It is incumbent on the organization to prove its capability to achieve high-performance business results and deliver unique and differentiated customer experiences consistently. Running a digital business requires well managing strategic thinking - planning- action- measurement continuum for accelerating business performance and understanding business results dynamically.

Strategic thinking:  At the higher level, strategic thinking is about where you are, where you want to be, how to identify the key business problems/issues, how to close the multiple management gaps, set the right policies and guidelines, make choices, and take a series of actions. Strategic thinking is analytical, decision-oriented and directional, linking the future with the past and opportunistic. Leverage strategic thinking to clarify what you intend to do in the future for building high-performance and high mature business. The biggest mind-shift in moving from operation-driven to strategic-oriented is to switch from focusing on activities and solutions to thinking about outcomes. Strategic Thinking is about getting the best information you could and continuously update, uncovering options, thinking long term, not just immediate goals. A blend of strategic thinking mixed with multiple thinking processes such as spatial thinking and visionary recognition, matrix thinking and systems thinking, information analysis and interpretation helps to predict the trends, diagnose the important business issues, make tough business decisions, manage risks and solve problems by taking a step-wise approach.

Ability to execute: Too many organizations separate thinking and doing, or take strategy making and implementation as the separate entities with linear steps. Strategy and execution are composite; one is useless without the other. With rapid changes and emerging business events, the strategy must be very flexible. It’s important to manage the strategy with iterative steps: planning - execution - adjustment, easy to share, and concise to follow. Knowing when to make changes, large or small, to the plan. Being able to plan in a way that's highly acceptable to the team, willingness and ability to play roles at different levels. The other challenge in executing the strategy stems from a lack of understanding or ownership of the strategic principles. It’s the work of the business management to inspire and motivate, help people navigate through difficult changes and achieve their goals, deliberately make the close alignment among the company’s strategic direction, its most distinctive capabilities, and most or all of its products and services to executive capability-based strategy smoothly.

Action-effect and performance measurement: You can only manage what you measure. Without measurements, it can be hard to tell whether attempted improvements achieve the expected results or not. The business leaders need to clarify how you will measure success in strategy management. Metrics can help to get some objective perspectives on action-effect - as a result of executing against the plan, the organization is able to deliver a differentiated experience as well as generate improved business performance. Managing digital performance and improving business achievement as an iterative continuum means setting metrics, adjusting plans, measuring performance and understanding business results dynamically. The effective performance measurement selected should be part of a link of cause and effect relationship, with financial objectives that ultimately affect the growth and long-term perspective of the organization. Silo-based approach to assume that the organizational performance is the sum of pieces is incorrect. The holistic performance management approach is fundamental to “keep the end” in mind, with dynamic, continuous, and interactive state to ensure that the performance of the entire business is superior to the sum of pieces.

The breadth and depth of digital strategy management include people (skills and capability), process (workflow, process effectiveness, and efficiency), knowledge transfer, technology update, the organizational structure design, process optimization, capability development, and performance evaluation. Organizations that thrive on managing strategic thinking - planning - action -effect cycle with consistency and predictability are excellent at maintaining business growth momentum and achieving higher-than-expected business results.


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