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Why it matters

In today's highly volatile environment (remember the acronym VUCA...), organizations must not only rethink their strategy, but also the way they design it. In this context, a clear and viable strategy is a major asset, an anchor for your strategy to continue producing value. However, this approach is becoming increasingly dynamic, agile and contextual, due to the unpredictable evolution of our environment. As a result, organizations that maintain an overly rigid approach to their strategy are particularly vulnerable to disruption.

Some ideas for developing this dimension with your team

Things to do

  • Unite all your stakeholders: staff, clientele, board members, advisory committees, authorities, external consultants and so on. This rallying of support will save you from political pitfalls. It will also help you to identify your customers' needs and sniff out new trends.
  • Use a modular, scenario-based approach to test and compare various options before settling on your strategy. Make sure you have assessed the risks. Teams and their stakeholders need to have a common understanding of the strategy before moving on to the implementation phase.
  • Be agile in deploying your strategy. Review it regularly. Your roadmap and priorities must be constantly adapted to changing circumstances. Communicate any adjustments to your stakeholders - internal and external - without delay.
  • Outline your strategy in a highly elaborate visual roadmap. This document ideally fits on one page. With its explicit and concise content, it will be more effective than a Gantt chart in mobilizing people around the same strategy, because it will be easier to read. So your strategy will have the best chance of being understood and applied throughout the organization.
  • Deploy your strategy in real time, in a participative mode. Record the key elements of your roadmap on a collaborative digital platform. The latest generation of software64 dedicated to strategic decision-making enables you to map all parameters (e.g. stakes, risk factors) and track the flow of actions in real time.

What to avoid

  • Rely on hypotheses or intuitions to develop a strategy. If you have relevant data, use it to update your knowledge and refine your strategy even further. Teams should seek to gather as much information as possible (for example, via platforms specializing in real-time marketing analytics, which, thanks to the Internet of Things, make it possible to understand how connected services are used by customers).
  • Entrust the preparation of your strategy to just a few people, sometimes exclusively to external consultants. As already mentioned, it's best to proceed in a collaborative manner, actively involving your teams. Not only will you benefit from their collective intelligence, but you'll also find it easier to get them on board. Which will make the rest a whole lot easier...
  • Congratulate yourself without questioning the previous plan. Don't become complacent. Even if you've had an excellent year and your overall objectives remain the same, take the trouble to re-evaluate them in the light of current events. Don't run the risk of being caught out by reality.
  • Develop a plan that's out of touch with your organization's reality. My advice is to start by reviewing your team's skills, resources and capabilities (human and financial). Next, check that you have the necessary budget to carry out your plan, taking into account the possible recruitment of new talent or the purchase of new systems. Don't be evasive about how you intend to remedy any shortcomings.
  • Clinging too tightly to the plan. Successful teams know how to react quickly when it's imperative. They also demonstrate good iterative skills, setting up review and learning cycles to constantly adjust their strategic direction. What's more, they skilfully combine various tools (e.g. performance indicators and dashboards) to measure progress and manage feedback during the implementation phase.

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