By Denise Harrison
What differentiates your company in the market? What sets you apart in your customers' eyes? What do your potential customers think? These competitive differences may be good - but they may not be good. Would it be good if your customers think your company is difficult to do business with? Would you know? What if your customers think that your product has the best quality, but is also the most expensive - should you target potential customers who are only looking for the cheapest price?
What is the primary source of Strategic Issues?
In the Market Segment analysis, what is the difference between a need and a preference?
This column is intended to answer common questions related to strategic planning and strategy in general. In each issue we will answer questions posed by seminar attendees, our clients and our readers. Please send your questions to - email@example.com Mail: CSSP, Inc. 2219 Packard Road, Suite 13, Ann Arbor, MI 48104
By Dana Baldwin, Senior Consultant
Why do so many smaller companies have difficulty getting started with strategic planning? Over 90% of Fortune 500 companies do some form of strategic planning, but only about 25% of small companies do formal strategic planning. Many companies appear to get by without doing formal planning for some period of time...
By Robert Bradford
I've been doing a lot of thinking about strategic thinking this month. One of the things that vex me is when people overuse the term "strategic", as if it is a magic wand that will make something - such as social media marketing - more valuable. While there IS such a thing as "strategic social marketing", calling it strategic does not make it so.
By Denise Harrison
Are you achieving your strategy or are you slipping? How can you keep your team on track? Monitoring is one of the key aspects of successful execution. Here is a monitoring checklist - if you can accomplish these items you are well on your way to successful execution.
By M Dana Baldwin
What are the characteristics of a good leader? While there are many fine attributes that a leader should have and exhibit, what leadership comes down to is the ability to interact and lead people to accomplish tasks which lead to the success of the organization and of the individual.
By Robert W. Bradford
Strategic planning is the process of setting an organization's course to optimize its future results. We define anything that revolves around one of three questions as strategic:
These may seem like simple questions, but they are not.
By Denise Harrison
"As part of Caterpillar's strategy the company has identified the mining industry and improved support of its customers as one of Caterpillar's key imperatives." (Press release, 11/10/11)
What trends did Caterpillar see that made the mining industry attractive?
By M. Dana Baldwin
Strategy: the course and direction we want to take the company. Culture: the way things are done in the company, the atmosphere within the company and the sum of the relationships within the company. Not easily defined, nor easily quantified, it is the essence of the heartbeat of a company.
Christopher Anbari, President / CEO, Result Global
Repeated studies have shown that improving employee engagement enables companies to be more profitable. In this case, Result Global, a leading consulting firm which specializes in solving critical problems for companies with poor employee engagement, was brought into a well-established computer products company located in Michigan. This company produces scanners, printers, Auto ID and labeling systems. The company has 350 full-time employees.
By Robert W. Bradford
I spend a lot of time around motivational speakers. These people tend to be very positive, and always talk about how we should transcend our limits. This is a useful way of thinking, but the word "limit" can also mean something very real that should NOT be passed.
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Success in today's business environment requires that a company's leaders have the ability to create a vision of the organization's future direction as well as the course it needs to get there.
While various business improvement techniques such as Total Quality Management and Re-engineering are often extremely beneficial to the ongoing progress of a business, correct Strategic Focus remains the single most important element in a company's success.
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Robert Bradford, CEO
Center for Simplified Strategic Planning, Inc.
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Ann Arbor, MI 48104
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