HOW DO MOST BUSINESS PEOPLE
DIGITAL STRATEGY IS MORE LIKE A
UNDERSTAND STRATEGY ?
SCIENTIFIC EXPERDITION THAN
TRAVELLING FROM A TO B
Classical strategy can be understood as the process of getting from point A to point B. Point A is the current location of the organization and Point B is the strategic goal that the organization sets for itself. Classical strategy begins with a pursuit to accurately assess the current situation, in other words Point A. For example, one tool which is used is the famous SWOT Analysis - Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats. The next step is the determination of the strategic goal. This is Point B that is a fixed destination to work towards and achieve. Point B can be items such as increasing market share, addressing new market segments or gaining new organizational capabilities. The all-embracing role of classical strategic planning is to move the organization from its current position (Point A) to the desired pre-determined destination (Point B) as efficiently as possible. Classical strategy is deliberate in nature. It depends on senior leaders to set goals and develop plans to achieve them. This typically leads to long-term plans which the organization doggedly adheres to and executes over a multi-year time frame.
In the spirit of a scientific expedition – learning along the way, collaborating via cross-functional teams, adapting to unforeseen change, dealing with risk - offers an appropriate metaphor for digital strategy.
(c) Deutsche Welle
Both the famous expeditions of Alexander von Humboldt in South America in the 18th century or Charles Darwin aboard the Beagle in the 19th century were expeditions without fixed destinations. The journey itself was the destination. Humboldt and Darwin gathered as much information as they could along their journeys in order to gain insights into the emerging sciences of biology, geology and evolution. Along the way, they were constantly interacting with the environ- ment to learn as much as possible. In the current business environment, promoting a similar intense interaction with the environment can provide an organization with a broad spectrum of potential options. Some options may lead to new breakthrough business models and/or processes which will allow a company to serve its customers more advantageously.
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