There was a great article a few weeks ago in the Harvard Business Review by David I. Collis, Michael G. Rukstad titled (Can You Say What Your Strategy Is? ). The article highlights that “most executives cannot articulate the objective, scope, and advantage to their business in a simple statement. If they can’t, neither can anyone else.”
So how does an organization develop a successful and clear strategy? With the end in mind. Not a literal end but a place in the future no less than three years and no more than five years away. Anything less than three years does not provide enough time to deal with the real challenges and changes that will be needed to be successful. Anything more than five becomes un-grounded in reality because there is so much evolution in the marketplace driven by the advance of technology.
As that destination is understood it will start to force a series of questions about the product, the organization and most importantly the team. What people will be required to reach success, and at what point will they need to be hired. The end also helps prioritize needs and define what resources will be needed.
Often success is handicapped because plans driven by the limitations of today cannot grow beyond what is possible today. And one thing is certain with start-ups, there is a great deal that will change.
Also keep in mind that whatever the target is the only certainty is that the plan will be wrong. But a smart, experienced and passionate team is much more likely to overcome obstacles and manage change. So build a great team – and a great group of advisers. IT usually takes time to find great people and often resources are not available to hire what is needed. A great group of advisers can go a long way to reduce the pain while the team is being developed.
So in summary, understand where you want to go, where you are today and who else do you need to reach your destination.