There seems to be a ‘strategy’ for everything these days, but much of what is referred to as strategy is little more than low level tactical planning, rather than an articulation of the means by which business goals will be achieved.
So whether or not it has evolved over time or is the result of a deliberate strategy formulation exercise the following are some useful questions for assessing the strength of your strategy :
1. Have you made clear choices as to what segments of the market you are competing in (and avoiding)? Have you defined your market?
2. Does your strategy deliver competitive advantage(s) to your business?
3. Have you identified what makes you different from the competition – special insights, expertise, operational capabilities, positional advantages etc
4. Is your competitive advantage (s) sustainable over time?
5. Can you articulate your strategy in clear, unambiguous and practical terms?
6. Is the strategy consistent with the mission of the business and will it lead to achievement of business objectives?
7. Have you communicated your strategy effectively to the workforce?
8. Do you have an action plan to deliver the strategy?
9. Is your resource allocation aligned/prioritized to deliver your strategic objectives?
10. Do you know what early warning signs would trigger a strategic review?
Good strategy comes from being ever vigilant to evolving trends in the competitive landscape and having the courage to make timely changes in strategic positioning in response to these trends.
With the shortening of planning horizons having a strategic mindset (future focus beyond short term priorities) is becoming ever more critical to business success and survival.