Keep strategy simple (KSS)

Sep 14th

It’s one of the lesser joys of being an organisational consultant when the client hands you their latest strategy study. It’s invariably long and full of great analysis. All very clever stuff you are tempted to say, but does anyone really understand it? Most good strategy comes down to a few simple ideas which you can often express as simple ‘shifts’. These capture the essence of what is going to be different in the future, for example:

  • ‘Moving from being a regional player to being a global player’
  • ‘Moving from being a set of disconnected businesses to being one firm’
  • ‘Moving from a series of different technologies in different boxes to making the best use of all technologies across the company’

So next time you’re confronted with a complex strategy document, just ask what are the three or four things that are going to be different in the future from how they are today.

(And if anyone wants your theoretical source for this, point them to Ockham’s razor from the 14th century philosopher William of Ockham’s dictum that in complex things, keep to the simplest explanation)

This article is filed under: strategy process

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