Module 1: How to define a Strategy

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Landing the concept

Strategy definition and implementation is one of the most important skills that leaders need to have in order to have a well disposed and motivated staff. 

Today, a leader today needs the skill to envision a strategy and to implement it. He/she needs to be sufficiently flexible to change a strategy that isn’t working or didn’t previously work and to analyze past mistakes. Many studies point out that although the rates of strategy implementations failures are rising, leaders are very reluctant about changing their ways. This creates a paradoxical effect through which strategies are failing exactly because they have failed in the past and almost nothing has been learned in the meanwhile.

The findings of experts from private research [1] and from the European Union [2] can be of help in crafting an effective and engaging strategy. They are summarized and presented in an extensive PowerPoint presentation, with clear points and objectives to be reached, which we encourage you to read with an open mind. The reader will be guided through the best practices in identifying milestones, pairing them with actors and dates and in disseminating findings or strategies themselves, so that they can be understood and interiorized by employees and public alike.

Take Action!

If you are in charge of defining or implementing a strategy right now, take a look at your organization and reflect on whether the best practices pointed out by the PowerPoint presentation are sufficiently implemented in your workplace.

If you are not in a position of leadership, take a look at your institution’s practices for implementing strategies and for dissemination. Are there places that could use some improvement? Is the implementation of strategies usually a straightforward matter in your field or does it usually cause concerns and issues?

If you find that a specific practice you are already adopting in your workplace is particularly effective, please share it with fellow participants. As strategy building concepts are still in their infancy, commenting can also be useful to gain feedback and ideas from other institutions and managers, on a level playing field.

Test Yourself