Many Strategies Fail Because They’re Not Actually Strategies by HBR.org

Written by Ash Richardson

20 years digital tech and strategy experience, including co-founding #team, Accenture, MP of Oyster Partners (now DigitasLBi) and ex-VC investing in technology startups. Unique skills on product strategy, design and offshoring.

Static strategy docs and top-down comms is so old school!

“The strategy consultants come in, do their work, and document the new strategy in a PowerPoint presentation and a weighty report. Town hall meetings are organized, employees are told to change their behavior, balanced scorecards are reformulated, and budgets are set aside to support initiatives that fit the new strategy. And then nothing happens.”

That’s been the way for the last 30 years. Static strategy documents that tend to be communicated top-down and tied to stretch, reasonable or conservative measures/KPIs/OKRs.

We see there are two problems.

The first, articulated by Freek Vermeulen as: “A real strategy involves a clear set of choices that define what the firm is going to do and what it’s not going to do.” This point is convincingly argued by Richard Rumelt, mentioned in our other article.

The second, is the need to break the age old paradigm of static documents and the terrible human experience of communicating via email.

#stratapp helps solve both problems, not only by killing internal email. When you start to articulate your strategy inside #stratapp, the transparency and tree hierarchy naturally drives clarity in strategic choices. There are no static documents and all social collaboration takes place within the context of that hierarchy – so instead of just adding more noise, the social engagement, at all levels of the organization, has a direct and meaningful impact on strategic choices, strategy development, execution planning, execution and the evolution of those four.

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