How can I develop my own strategies

Strategy development: methods, examples, tips

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With a strategy you win wars and chess games. But do you also need them in the company? If you don't want to leave the company's success to chance, you will probably answer with: Yes. But how do you go about the Strategy development in front? What is important? With the right methods, you can lead your company into the next age. These top corporations finally made it ...

Strategy development definition: what is it?

Not every entrepreneur or founder finds time to develop a strategy in everyday business life. For example, because he or she is heavily involved in the operational process. A Strategy development costs time and therefore money, is complex and exhausting.

And: with the term alone strategy not everyone can do something. What is that supposed to be anyway - a strategy? “We want to be the market leader in ten years.” That is not a strategy, but a goal. "We want to expand our online sales." That is not a strategy, but a measure.

There are several facets to a strategy. Why do we want to expand online sales? How do we expand it? And what opportunities and risks does this mean for our company? A strategy could be described as a long-term plan that defines exactly how one intends to achieve which overall goal. A Corporate strategy is therefore made up of visions, goals and measures.

Or as thought leader Henry Mintzberg put it, "Strategy is one of those words that we like to define one way but use another way."

Strategy development in 4 steps: procedure and methods

The topic of strategy development fills entire libraries and lecture halls. So there is no one silver bullet or one model that explains everything. There are countless tools, methods, and procedures. There is, for example, the ...

  • Mintzberg model

    (see grafic)

  • Industry structure analysis

    (after Porter)

  • STEP analysis

    (or: PEST analysis, see grafic)

In addition, there are these four steps to strategy development:

  1. Step: vision

    That’s the beginning A company's self-image. Who are we? What do we do? Where do we want to go? US futurologist John Naisbitt said, “Strategic planning is worthless unless you have one first strategic vision.“

    This also includes the question of the Corporate purpose. Is it all about making money? Is that enough as a long-term vision? This is about the company's raison d'etre, its competencies, the benefits for consumers. What can all arise from this in the future? Anyone who asks this question creates a valuable working basis.

    They also have to Goals of an organization not be of a financial nature at all. Examples: NGOs or universities. And in Silicon Valley this goal is often given: Change the world, make the world better. To what extent can our company do this - and with what means and measures?

    All these Questions of principle flow into the vision. The vision forms something like that spiritual foundation the company.

  2. Step: environment

    A company is never self-sufficient, but always from the reactions his environment dependent. So step 2: that Analyze the market environment. Political, economic, social and technological trends can play a role in this. These factors should be included in the Strategy development flow in.

    The art is Anticipate trends. What sales opportunities does a product or service have?

    example Automotive industry: Anyone who anticipates a world without diesel and combustion engines is aligning their strategy towards electric or self-driving cars. example Banks: Because customers are increasingly asking for products and advice via the Internet, financial institutions are digitizing their services. example Food: Because organic products and healthy foods are becoming more and more popular, sausage manufacturer Rügenwalder is changing a large part of its range to vegan and meat-free products. example electronics: Because customers prefer tablets, laptops and smartphones, IBM is changing its strategy and would rather sell cloud services instead of desktop PCS.

    A Market analysis can help to analyze the environment correctly. But you can probably not only rely on market data. Take startups, for example: Anyone who ventures into a completely new, unexplored niche has little or no data available. For better or for worse, he has to follow his instinct.

    In any case, reliable forecasts are often not possible at all. Lots Market assessments and calculations are based on Probabilities. That is why a strategy is always based on incomplete information.

    And because the prognoses rarely agree with reality, one can also do so directly Plan B, C and D design. What do we do if the numbers do develop in the other direction? And what if Great Britain doesn't leave the EU at all?

    Ergo: Available data should flow into the strategy, but you cannot trust them completely.

  3. Step: company

    For many, this is where the uncomfortable part begins: where are we actually? Where are ours Strengths and weaknesses? What is our role in this market? Often times, external consultants also play a major role when it comes to the relentless inventory of a company.

    Here, too, can Data material help to put things right. How have the sales figures for our products developed? How do we fare in a rapidly changing market environment?

    In times of big data, almost every company can fall back on (large and small) online analysis tools: usage data analysis, web analytics, conversion tracking and the like. From this too, conclusions can be drawn for the strategic direction derive.

  4. Step: synthesis

    The inventory is over. Now all the facts and forecasts are on the table. Often the so-called comes now SWOT matrix for use. SWOT stands for strengths (strenghts), weaknesses (weaknesses), opportunities and risks (threats).

    The task now is to bring together all of the knowledge that has been collected in order to turn them into concrete instructions for action. The matrix looks roughly like this:


    • Strengths and opportunities: If a strength meets an opportunity, it's a match. Example: The company's core competence lies in an absolute growth market, but the market share can be expanded. How can the company use its strengths even more effectively to increase market share?
    • Weaknesses and opportunities: When there are enormous growth opportunities in a field, but the company is not positioned to take advantage of this opportunity. How can we still take the chance? How do we overcome our weaknesses?
    • Strengths and Risks: When there are major challenges in the market, but which should be compensated and overcome with your own skills. Example: The company is the market leader in online job advertisements and is expanding its position. How do we react when Google enters this market? How do we ward off the impending danger?
    • Weaknesses and risks: An unfortunate combination, but not a hopeless one. The prospects are vague and the company is ill-armed. How can we free ourselves from the grip? How do we get out of this situation? Or even just: How do we get out of the matter healed?

    Those were the basic stages on the way to becoming one Corporate strategy. Now the implementation phase begins. As is well known, this is the hardest part ...

6 strategies for success in large companies

A strategy doesn't have to be complicated. Here are six success strategies from well-known companies - summarized in a single sentence:

  • Apple: Focus on design and usability.
  • Amazon: Rely on the convenience of customers.
  • Ikea: Make your branches an experience and create identification.
  • Starbucks: Expand quickly - and rely on your high recognition value.
  • Google: Make yourself indispensable to people.
  • Lego: Concentrate on your core product and keep reinventing it.

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October 18, 2020Author: Sebastian Wolking

Sebastian Wolking is a freelance online editor. He is interested in the changes in the job market caused by the digital revolution.

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