What Strategy Is NOT

May 7, 2013 1 Comment

Photo provided by Alex Pelayo. Check out the rest of his amazing portfolio here!

This post is Part III in a series on Strategic Planning and Emergence.

Your vision is not your strategy.  Neither is your plan.  Your benchmarks are not your strategy, nor your complicated grids.  Your hedgehog or your very audacious goals are not your strategy either.  Your predictions of what the future will look like, no matter how organized and well researched, are definitely not your strategy.

The idea that the world is too complex and emergent for you to have a strategy is not a strategy either.  Nor is it true.

Your intuition is not your strategy either.

Doing what you have successfully done in the past might be called a strategy, but it is a bad one.

Yes, some coming together of these attributes – some combination of the your vision, your understanding of your field of play, and your plan for how to win in that space, can come together to become your strategy.  But none of these pass muster on their own.

Strategic planning can become a psychological game.  It can become a process for articulating our aspirations as well as a tool used to pretend we can control the future.  This is precisely why it is so important to draw distinctions and be clear about what strategy is and isn’t.

To hear more about what strategy is, check out my earlier post.

1 Comment

  • Here are a few more things it isn’t …

    * a document that gathers dust without ever affecting how you do your work
    * a set of rules that you can never make a conscious choice to break

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