In shaping strategy for more than thirty years both with clients and in my own businesses, I have come to believe in a few simple principles for good strategy.
- Be clear and honest in defining your organization's core strengths or distinctive competencies. Distinctive competencies that are built and nurtured internally are the basis of effective execution. Outside acquisition of such competencies is possible but presents some risk.
- Develop a sixth sense of your market and how it is changing. A sense of market comes from being able to tap reliable sources internally and externally. Being open to new opportunities will enable you to sense the possibility in any situation.
- Take calculated risks when trying new ideas. Although innovation is the lifeblood of growth, not all new ideas work within the parameters of your business market. Successful innovation means a balance between new ideas and a working knowledge of proven approaches.
- Encourage learning. The best insights come from the ongoing dynamics of the internal and external marketplace: new initiatives, customers, changes in the market.