TradeBriefs Editorial

From the Editor's Desk

Many Strategies Fail Because They're Not Actually Strategies

Many strategy execution processes fail because "new strategies" are often not strategies at all. 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. Many strategies fail to get implemented because they do not represent such a set of clear choices. And many so-called strategies are in fact goals. "We want to be the number one or number two in all the markets in which we operate" is one of those. It does not tell you what you are going to do; all it does is tell you what you hope the outcome will be. But you'll still need a strategy to achieve it. Another reason why many implementation efforts fail is that executives see it as a pure top-down, two-step process: "The strategy is made; now we implement it." That's unlikely to work. A successful strategy execution process is seldom a one-way trickle-down cascade of decisions.

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