Had a great meeting with one of my supervisors this week. We discussed working my literature review into something suitable to be submitted for publication. He encouraged me to put three – four hypothesis’ together and to start to build out 3-4 pieces of work around what can go wrong. Described as a staking a claim, the suggestion is to not necessarily solve the question but instead pose it with enough information to get some interest.
So hypothesis 1 is that the terminology around strategy is not clearly understand within organisations and this misunderstanding leads to low levels of performance. This is certainly my experience. The CEO says strategy and the rest of the business hears ?????
The example given to me was the clear level of communication that has been developed in the military. In the military strategy is the ‘what are we going to do’ i.e. we are going to invade country X. The tactics are the “how are we going to do it” i.e. with tanks or marines or bombing.
Once people are deployed and in action then there are three clear instructions that are given;
These are obviously very clear. The ‘how’ to do this is often left up the field commander but the instruction on ‘what’ to do is issues from HQ. Maybe what businesses need to do is establish an communication system around strategy, a common language so that they are all saying the same thing. Many organisations do work on common language around many areas of their operations and client interaction but I wonder how many have done the same around their strategic thinking.