We often think we know what we mean when we use the term “strategic.” It’s self evident, right? Except, in my experience, it is very often not. Strategic is often viewed as a vague concept outlining general ideas that don’t really provide much guidance, direction or usefulness. Which is exactly what we don’t need more of. My take on what strategic looks like, and the meaning that you should be seeking.
We get taught the principles of inquiry at a young age. Who, what, where, when, why and how are essential dimensions of the work we do and changes that we make. The question that we most lose site of, though, is “Why?”
How we think about change is stuck in the past. Judging by the way we organize, there are those who would like to keep it that way. We need to think differently about how we organize for change. And we need to change our organizations.
There are few terms that have the same unbridled acceptance in business as “best practices.” Except that, for many organizations, best practices fail to deliver on the theoretical promise implied by the term. Best implies one superior way of working, where in reality there are many practices dependent upon many different things.
Disruption has become sexy, and the idea of disruptive innovation has come to dominate (and begin to spread beyond) startup culture. Nonetheless, execution and exploitation have their place as well. We need to organize in a way that accommodates both.
Virtually my entire career has been, in one way or another, focussed on the creation of change. I am not a status-quo kind of guy. What I’ve learned about realizing strategy and managing change in organizations.