Thinking before implementing strategy

I work with a team which helps implement strategy – turning strategic objectives into results.  Funnily enough, when we meet a new client the strategic drivers and objectives are often far from clear.  Executives come to us because they want to do something and they want to make it happen quickly. That’s fine. We can…

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Strategic Doing: Faster Strategy, More Doing

Strategic Doing is a powerful way to achieve meaningful change and address complex problems.  Complex, or sticky problems have no clear solution. They can absorb a huge quantity of resources – and often little obvious progress is made unravelling the issues or developing a viable way forward. They need a fresh approach to address these…

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Strategic Roadmaps: Unravelling the mystery

In many organisations, there’s an aura of mystique surrounding strategy.  It can seem disconnected from the everyday, from business as usual, from what people do.  I’ve found this especially true of the “strategic roadmap”, a mysterious document concocted by gregarious people after a session in front of a whiteboard at an off-site somewhere.   Strategic…

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The Value of Quantifying Waste

The city I live in has a big problem with its water pipes. The region’s water provider, Wellington Water, estimates 45% of the drinking water it supplies is lost through damaged pipes. The loss is from over 3,000 leaks in the water mains, not dripping taps on private property. Historic underinvestment, messy governance and an…

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Project Sponsor: Three Types of Authority

Projects implement strategy.  The Project Sponsor (or Executive Sponsor) is the person responsible for the success of a project.  They provide strategic alignment, necessary guidance and resources to the project manager and team.  In most cases, they are the original champion of the project, but may also have inherited it from a predecessor.  A key…

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Sunk Cost Fallacy: How holding on can sink your productivity

In the National Basketball Association (NBA), teams frequently offer players multi-year contracts, based on performance or potential. However, various factors like aging or injuries can lead to a decline in these players’ performance over time. In some cases, despite the initial promise, these players may not meet expectations. They are a sunk cost. Despite this,…

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Strategy means facing challenges

Delivery of strategy always has its challenges. Lack of money, resources and support can affect success. My first job out of university was as a historic researcher for the New Zealand Forest Service (NZFS) then the Department of Conservation (DOC).  My job was to research historic sites and to help develop a successful strategy for…

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3 Ways to celebrate your success in 2023

This past year has been tough for many people and organisations but the chances are you had successes too. I am a business owner but I also donate time to help raise professional standards and organisational performance. That includes being a judge in competitions that celebrate success so I want to encourage you to consider…

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Focus your Business on your Value Proposition

I moved into a new apartment recently and took on the internet account. What I thought would have been a simple, user-friendly task, unfortunately, was far from it. I’ve never seen something so simple made so difficult. The internet service provider’s (ISP’s) business processes are so poor. The customer is not the focus at all. …

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Strategic Success: Lessons from a Marathon

Sometimes, strategy fails. Even a rigorous plan and putting the right people, processes, and systems in place does not guarantee success. One can either deviate from the strategy, or unexpected events occur that throw your strategy out the window. I recently ran a marathon and likened it to the challenges of managing a strategic project…

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