29. März 22
When the Vision Fades - from Strategy Review to Strategy Re-boost
Vision and strategy 2025 were brilliant. Ambitious but reachable. Clear measures tucked into a roadmap that everyone could understand. Key players in the organization were visibly investing in the implementation. First results could be seen even faster than expected. These had been very good two first years.
Then came Alpha.
Then the new business unit leader.
Then Delta, and Omikron.
Then it was quite unclear if the current vision and strategy were more than another initiative starting as a tiger and landing as a house cat.
When the CEO approached us to support a strategy review, our task was framed as follows: Design a lean process that allows the Board to review and adapt the strategy according to major new developments and integrate both top-down and bottom-up elements. We proposed designing the process using the following framework:
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A strategy review in the middle of the strategy period should cover the following areas:
- Integrate new insights and developments: The post-COVID world for most companies is different from the situation before 2019. Evaluating – sometimes detecting and evaluating – changes in customers’ needs, the competitive landscape, internal aspects such as employee working routines and the overall ecosystem are major starting points.
- Use learnings from previous years: Strategy implementation usually has not halted, not even in recent years. It’s worthwhile to check which targets have already been met and where initiatives did not go well. Evaluating this enables insights on where the initial strategy needs to be reviewed and very often sheds light on cultural patterns regarding commitment and related delivery that should be considered in the next period.
- Balance re-boosting re-confirmed elements & integrating new strategy elements: A major mistake in strategy review processes is to underestimate the attention given to what is NOT being said. Very often, leaders focus entirely on the changes to a strategy even when major parts of the strategy remain valid. That’s why we usually combine reviews with re-boost. Supporting unchanged strategic initiatives by showing their relevance in the adapted strategy is a core asset to fulfillment.
- Shape the process to strengthen and re-boost implementation: A strategy review process should always be designed to strengthen the implementation power of the organization. This means that key players leading current initiatives must be involved. Even if initiatives need to be fundamentally realigned, incorporating inclusiveness and respect during the process will lead to better results and motivate them and others in the next phase.
The CEO and the Board liked the approach. We were hired.
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Read more: Kompakte Strategieentwicklung