The effectiveness of a good strategy well implemented determines a business' future success or failure. Yet history is full of strategic decisions, big and small, that were ill-conceived, poorly organized and consequently disastrous. This updated guide looks at the whole process of strategic decision-making, from vision, forecasting, and resource allocation, through to implementation and innovation.
Strategy is about understanding where you are now, where you are heading and how you will get there. There is no room for timidity or confusion. Although the CEO and the board decide a company's overall direction, it is the managers at all levels of the organization who will determine how the vision can be transformed into action. In short, everyone is involved in strategy.
But getting it right involves difficult choices: which customers to target, what products to offer, and the best way to keep costs low and service high. And constantly changing business conditions inevitably bring risks. Even after business strategy has been developed, a company must remain nimble and alert to change, and view strategy as an ongoing and evolving process.
The message of this guide is simple: strategy matters, and getting it right is fundamental to business success.
Jeremy Kourdiis a business consultant and executive coach, founding director of the executive coaching firm Entendeo Ltd, and the author of twenty-five books. Formerly senior vice president withThe Economist, he has also worked with a wide range of organizations including The Economist Group, Duke Corporate Education, HSBC, Novartis, Pearson, Tetra Pak, Zurich/Farmers Insurance, the IMD Business School and London Business School. He also has an M.A. in International Relations from the University of Kent.