Monthly Archives: July 2014

Strategy and Thankfulness

images (18)There is a lot of material on detailed analysis in strategy formulation. There will be, to some extent, thoughts and discussions on the need for a holistic, right brained, creative input as well. To fine tune and polish up the overall strategy. To make sure all the pieces fit in together with each other and with The WHOLE.

However, whatever literature and science of strategy I have come across, the Value of Thankfulness has never been used in the same breath, talk, sentence, chapter or even book as strategy 🙂

I guess it is that ‘soft’, superficial kind of thing that finds no place in the world of ‘Super Intelligent and Rational Strategy’ discussions.

Like the start of any activity, one could initiate the process of strategy formulation with ‘Thankfulness’ towards all stakeholders. Employees, customers, shareholders, suppliers ….. competition !? ….. The Universal Power !? Towards our products !? To all those who brought things up to where they are today. A ritual as with so many good things that we start !!

“May do it once, but strategy is a very dynamic thing, you know; like having to constantly dance on your feet in a boxing ring”, someone would say. So great, let’s express Gratitude and Thankfulness all the time !!images (17)

This simple Value, expressed genuinely and timely, can create so much Harmony and Flow in the preparation, building and execution of strategy. Enthusiastic participation can bring in richness, diversity and depth of thoughts and insights from one and all with full ownership and accountability.

Endless cups of coffee and stressful curses can be eased somewhat with nice sincere ‘Thanks’ on the way, making the process so much lighter, so much fun and full of life. The sheer positivity in the ecosystem can make strategy thinking much more creative, energetic, joyful, effective and insightful.

He that gives should never remember, he that receives should never forget. ~ The Talmud

 

 

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Strategy and Courage

Of all the Values that are important in the play of Strategy, Courage ranks extremely high. It is the ability to take a stand and to have the strength to do something in the face of adversity, challenge and pain.

images (16)In the run up to Strategy, even before a Strategy is put in place, one has to have strong conviction in an idea, thought, mission, vision and/or intention. Needless to say, due diligence must be done in evaluating all scenarios and alternatives.

But once all deliberations are done and a course of action is determined to be wise, never discredit your judgement. Stand squarely behind your strategy and decision.

Course correction, basis midway changes, however, is a wise thing to do. Flexibility, not rigidity, is a characteristic of the Courageous. The virtue of honesty, truthfulness and a courageous recognition of reality combine into one of the most important virtues ….. Integrity.

images (15)There will be people who misunderstand intentions and actions and condemn, but if, as per your judgement and wholistic assessment, you are doing ‘The Right Thing’ and ‘The Right Way’, there is nothing to fear.

Take a stand !!

 

 

 

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Strategy and Moderation

One of my biggest lessons in life has been related to ‘Moderation’. Extremes, I learned, are most often not the right route to take. It is more a ‘philosophy’ of life one builds on and becomes a way of thinking and taking decisions. images (14)

In pure business terms, I have seen the merit of cutting out extremes ….. on the one end of spectrum, to ‘reduce risk’ by not planning too aggressively ….. and on the other, to avoid not being ambitious/aspirational enough.

On another dimension, there is moderation needed between becoming too quantitative in strategy formulation and hence numbers driven vs staying highly qualitative and hence not specific enough. Moderation

Strategy also needs a good balance between the rational left brain and creative right brain thinking. I have seen merits of balancing a strategy by making a logical plan and then stepping back and looking at the ‘gestalt’ to ‘see and feel whether it all makes sense’ ….. using intuition and gut to ‘add that extra beauty’ to a well developed plan !!

Life, perse, is a perfect example of the outcome of moderation on planet earth and in homeostasis in our bodies. Mother Earth operates in a well defined range of temperature, humidity, atmospheric conditions ….. and any variation outside this range is corrected through well defined feedback mechanisms. So also is true with our bodies. Any disturbance of this delicate dynamic balance can cause disturbances and disease. A moderated and balanced system, in harmony with its ecosystem thrives with sustainable life in Bliss !! Strategy should ensure moderated and dynamic flow of life in a system.

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Strategy and Confidence !!

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Strategy makes the difference between a successful company & a failure ? The word has its origins in Greek :

Strategia’ = “generalship”

Stratos = “army”

agein’ = “to lead”.

In military science, strategy refers to the large scale plan for how the generals intend to fight & win a war. Strategy is about making choices to have A Winning Proposition to not only preserve resources, but leverage & multiply ….. in the Creation of Value ….. (in the same order as below) :

  • To Create Value for customers
  • To Build ROI for organisation

A Unique ‘Causal’ relationship exists between ‘Strategy’ and ‘Confidence’. The approach to Strategy has to be with full confidence ….. in one’s intentionality, in capability, in execution, in insights, in people…..

….. And deep insights, robust strategy, capable team ….. in turn lead to Confidence !!

Confidence is contagious & so is lack of confidence & a customer (as well as your enemy) will recognize both.

Confidence-Graphic

General Patton, having studied in detail and read his opponent Rommel’s book, exclaims after scoring over Rommel in battle “Rommel, you b******, I read your book !!”

A quote from General Patton captures the ‘Strategy – Confidence’ correlation beautifully : “A man must know his destiny. If he does not recognize it, then he is lost. By this I mean, once, twice, or at the very most, three times, fate will reach out and tap a man on the shoulder. If he has the imagination, he will turn around and fate will point out to him what fork in the road he should take, If he has the guts, he will take it.”

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