Some Tips On Business Strategy For Your Considering

Prior to formulating a successful business strategy, one has to understand why so many business managers fail. Some are let down by Lady Luck. Others might not be sufficiently ambitious. Yet others might prefer sitting in their cozy little offices and taking no risks, without which victory is not feasible.

There are six major types of strategic errors. The first error, called Do-It-All, consists of doing everything that comes one’s way without prioritizing tasks. The second error is the Don Quixote approach- take on your roughest competitor rightaway without looking right or left. Then there is the Waterloo strategy, a blunder of Napoleonic proportions, that involves fighting on all fronts simultaneously.

The Something For Everyone approach tries to capture every sort of customer without defining the market properly. The Programme of the Month means that identity is sacrificed at the altar of conformism. And finally there is the Dreams That Never Come True approach which fails to translate mission statements into concrete plans about which market to attack-and capture-first.

The manager of a major consumer goods major doubled the sales of his company and never failed in his ten years at the company. The secret of his success was to embed a systematic, rule-based approach to business strategy throughout his vast business empire. In doing this, he spoke to some of the leading academic thinkers including the godfathers of the field-Peter Drucker and Michael Porter. He also relied on a personal brains trust to advise him on his strategies as he went about implementing them.

A good strategy, according to him, has five elements. They are all designed to reduce the odds against success by assisting managers to make judicious selection. The first two elements are mutually dependent. They consist of determining what winning would feel like and then defining the market that must be dominated in order to achieve the final goal. Sometimes the goal would be global dominance, sometimes local. At this juncture the priority was X segment of the market, at other times it was Y.

The next ingredient was dominating the market that one has identified. This, in turn depended on two further ingredients of strategy: how to identify and bring into play the company’s strengths relative to its principal competitor in the said market. This meant that one had to know what were the things to be managed for the plan of action to be successful.

The opposite was also true-knowing what not to manage. Bureaucratic gatherings were replaced with focused agendas. A failing skin care brand was turned into a success by repositioning it and persuading people to buy it at a higher price than its competitors.

There are of course strategies that fail and there are many of them, in number much more than the ones that succeed. But good managers who follow a sound business strategy know how to quickly put the failures behind them and concentrate on the sectors that are showing a healthy and upwardly mobile profit. That’s what winning is all about.

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