Business Success: Management requires strategy

Leadership characteristics such as persistence, perseverance, and diligence are not enough for success in business, a sound strategy is also necessary.  Leading change in the strategy area is about creating a vision of the future.  The greatest challenge management faces is leading change in some aspect of organizational performance. Fundamentally, an organization that is not growing, is usually declining.


Together, those five tasks that demonstrate the responsibility of strategic management, in the particular order below, are:

Developing a vision and mission

The question facing organizational leadership is: “What is our business and what will it be in the future?”  Finding an answer to this question should provide the organization with a clear and concise picture of that enticing and compelling place to go from where they now are (vision), but also to provide the justification and shared logic of why this is where they should be going (mission).  Leadership is not simply a matter of rank or status, but essentially a question of inspiring people to move in a particular direction in order to get to get to a better place.

Setting objectives

Probably the most important guideline with regard to setting objectives, is that they should be a layered  process undertaken by leaders on all levels of the organization.  Each leader should ask the question: “If  these are the corporate vision, mission and strategic objectives of the organization as a whole, then what should the objectives of our local workgroup be?”

Crafting a strategy

The key questions here are whether organizational objectives should always precede strategy formulation, and whether objectives can originate from strategy.  The fact is that strategy and objectives are intertwined in an on-going progression of dynamic and intricate non-linear processes.  This is not to say that strategic leadership is a confused plate of spaghetti where neither head nor tail can be distinguished.  Rather, it is so dynamic that an oversimplification of the process may be the very reason why so many organizations fail to find a reality check between their strategic intent and the real world of their industry.

Strategy implementation and execution

A good strategy lacking in implementation and execution means little to an organization.  The reason why this would happen is the traditional view that putting strategy into place and getting individuals and organizational subunits to execute the strategy is essentially an administrative task.  The fact is that strategy implementation and execution is really a matter of alignment requiring committed and inspiring leadership on all levels and in all contexts of the organization.