How Your Strategy is Leading You Away From Your Goals
Strategy is all about fundamentals and if yours isn’t on point, your strategy is leading you away from your goals. Strategy is key because it always takes time to see if it’s working, so you have to boil everything you are dealing with down to its very essence, its fundamentals. Once you have found your goal (and you’re sure of it), your strategy is what will allow you to reach it.
A strategy devised without this fundamental approach will lead you away from your goals
Remember the board game called “Risk”? In the game each player is attempting world domination, but there are rules to play by. There are in business too. In the game players receive armies at the beginning of each turn that are used to take countries from other players by fighting to win the territory. Sounds a bit like business competition, to win the sale and take the customer. The more continents (complete groups of countries) a player controls, the more armies that player receives at the beginning of each turn. The more customers I have, the more seem to want to work with me. The more powerful a player is, the more power they receive each turn. Power begets power. Success begets more success. This is the essence of strategy – find what works for you and give it all you’ve got.
My strategy to win a game of “Risk” therefore doesn’t only involve aggressively pursuing control of continents to earn more armies for my next turn. It also involves preventing all the other players from controlling continents themselves, impeding each other player’s ability to overpower me. It’s a combination of offense and defense.
So is every successful strategy in business. Overpower the competition, don’t be overpowered by the competition.
Scoring the sale means that the customer gave you the power, and will not be empowering your competition. You made the money, they didn’t. Can you do it again? And again? Success begets success.
In business you have to understand all of the fundamentals, the variables that affect your ability to win (the sale, for example) in a competitive environment. Competition is good. It means there’s demand for what you are selling. The most common themes to address demand are (i) better, (ii) faster or (iii) cheaper. But these aren’t strategies.
First pick your theme, then identify the fundamentals you have to work with. Third, design your very own custom strategy that you can implement with consistency and force. Successful strategy means that you have created a winning fit between your company and your customer’s with economics that work for both parties. And are sustainable.
After all our goals are to build sustainable revenue growth and quality of earnings
The building blocks of strategy therefore must foster this very relationship. They are all the elements that make up (i) who your company is, (ii) who their company is and (iii) what about the economics make it a successful transaction that will happen over and over again?
Don’t forget that you need to constantly monitor results to know what’s working, and what’s not working so you can fix it. Change is the only constant in business. You can either cause change or suffer when change causes you to lose.