Increasing market dynamics have a consistent impact on the timeframe and form of strategy work in all company sizes and industries. Perspectives are becoming more short-term oriented and changes – also of a disruptive nature – require faster reactions and the willingness and ability to think strategy in terms of variants and alternatives.
“The Art of Opportunity” is the order of the day, i.e. the art of actively seizing opportunities and chances, and preferably doing so immediately. Of course, there are still three- to five-year planning horizons, but the intensive work on detailed and sophisticated strategy papers is becoming less and less important. Helpful strategy reviews focus in detail on the upcoming period and only set the framework for the longer term.
A strategy paper must express foundation, clarity of direction and motivation. Multi-year planning horizons address the effects of the targeted strategy and clarify the requirements in terms of organization, personnel and investments within a suitable timeframe.
Three central requirements
In a recent strategy review, the central essence of strategy work was described very graphically as follows:
- Are we sitting on the right horse?
(…is the basic business model correct…)
- Are we riding in the right direction?
(… do our assessments fit the market segments and the range of services…)
- Do we also ride well compared to others?
(… how are effectiveness and efficiency situated in the competitive environment…)
The period of time in which these three aspects are to be scrutinized is becoming shorter, and the formerly “long-term strategy work” accordingly needs more agility.
“Culture eats strategy for breakfast”
In recent years, it has also become increasingly apparent that successful strategy implementation is less dependent on concrete action planning, precise allocation of responsibilities and appropriate resourcing. Rather, corporate culture and strategy must fit together. The “togetherness in the company” must be characterized by attitudes that are helpful for the implementation of the strategy and allow it to succeed. For this reason, we also work actively on the further development of the corporate culture in our implementation support.
How do people act in an organization? Are there opportunities for self-organization and creative freedom? Are managers aware of their role model function, which behaviors are rewarded and which stories are told?
The results are clear: when culture, trust and appreciation are right, people are willing to go the “extra mile” – and this is exactly what is needed for successful strategy implementation.
We implement these requirements together
In compact, agile work formats, we reflect on the essential questions in an appropriate form. Market and performance analyses, review workshops, reflection on strategic thrusts and planning work in appropriate depth are some of the typical steps.
Our basic principle of joint creation is also particularly important to us here. Involvement, joint planning and development, and appropriate communication are essential.