Evolving Strategy

You can’t have a ‘Business Strategy’.

You can have a marketing strategy, or an information management strategy, or a production strategy; but it is not possible to have one overarching plan that defines and coordinates all the different aspects of a business (unless of course your business consists entirely of production, and you have no involvement with the decision-making processes that control human resources or accounting or marketing…)

People are irrational.

They pretend to be driven by logic and reason, but their actual zones of logic and reason are removed from the real word. Why else would we have TV commercials featuring talking rodents or fake Italian tenors or animated telephones-on-wheels? And these adverts are not for anything juvenile or frivolous, but for car insurance, a commodity which is actually compulsory.

And when you start to formulate your ‘business strategy’ you will realise that to secure the commitment of your staff, you will need to appeal to the irrational aspects of their nature. Because if you couch your business proposals in a reasonable, logical framework, they will be exceedingly dull – and indistinguishable from dozens of rival business proposals. For example, this extract is taken from the European Coatings Journal (Sept 2011):

“Our strategy is clear: to grow in established businesses through innovation, regional expansion, and development of our commercial activities. With regard to acquisitions, we will be concentrating on existing and, of course, new areas of business.”

Which sounds terribly wholesome and conventional without saying anything remotely interesting. If every firm has a near-identical mission statement, is there any point in having one at all?



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s