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Strategy (5): Strategy is about plans (part 1)

This is the fifth post in a series – start here.

Definition of Strategy (as a skill or activity):

Strategy is the practice of making, implementing and reviewing big-picture plans (strategies) with the intention of increasing the chances or speed at which you’ll achieve your major goals.

The most important things

The main purpose of strategy is to help you to identify the most important things to do. Achieving any significant goal involves negotiating a complicated onion of nested problems and activities, and it’s incredibly easy to waste resources on trivia. A good strategic plan provides clarity, enabling you to structure activity and focus effort.

Strategic planning is decision making.

It asks:

  • Where are we going? (What higher goal are we working towards?)
  • How will we get there? (What are the major steps that need to be taken and key processes to be established along the way?)
  • Who is responsible? Who can help? Who needs help?
  • What resources do we have? What key resources don’t we have (enough of) and how can we get (more of) them?

Each of these is a decision – a “cutting off” of alternatives – that provides clarity by reducing the number of possibilities at any level of work to a manageable number, allowing focus.

I'd love to hear your thoughts and recommended resources...