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Strategic management analyzes the major initiatives taken by a company's top management on behalf of owners, involving resources and performance in external environments.[1] It entails specifying the organization's mission, vision and objectives, developing policies and plans, often in terms of projects and programs, which are designed to achieve these objectives, and then allocating resources to implement the policies and plans, projects and programs. A balanced scorecard is often used to evaluate the overall performance of the business and its progress towards objectives. Recent studies and leading management theorists have advocated that strategy needs to start with stakeholders expectations and use a modified balanced scorecard which includes all stakeholders.

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Overview
Strategic management is a level of managerial activity below setting goals and above tactics. Strategic management provides overall direction to the enterprise and is closely related to the field ofOrganization Studies. In the field of business administration it is useful to talk about "strategic consistency" between the organization and its environment or "strategic consistency." According to Arieu (2007), "there is strategic consistency when the actions of an organization are consistent with the expectations of management, and these in turn are with the market and the context." Strategic management includes the management team and possibly the Board of Directors and other stakeholders. "Strategic management is an ongoing process that evaluates and controls the business and the industries in which the company is involved; assesses its competitors and sets goals and strategies to meet all existing and potential competitors; and then reassesses each strategy annually or quarterly [i.e. regularly] to determine how it has been implemented and whether it has succeeded or needs replacement by a new strategy to meet changed circumstances, new technology, new competitors, a new economic environment., or a new social, financial, or political environment." [2][3] Strategic Management can also be defined as "the identification of the purpose of the organisation and the plans and actions to achieve the purpose. It is that set of managerial decisions and actions that determine the long term performance of a business enterprise. It involves formulating and implementing strategies that will help in aligning the organization and its environment to achieve organisational goals." -------------------------------------------------

[edit]Concepts/approaches of strategic management
Strategic management can depend upon the size of an organization, and the proclivity to change of its business environment. These points are highlighted below: * A global/transnational organization may employ a more structured strategic management model, due to its size, scope of operations, and need to encompass stakeholder views and requirements. * An SME (Small and Medium Enterprise) may employ an entrepreneurial approach. This is due to its comparatively smaller size and scope of operations, as well as possessing fewer resources. An SME's CEO (or general top management) may simply outline a mission, and pursue all activities under that mission. * Whittington (2001) highlighted four approaches to strategic management. These are Classical, Processual, Evolutionary and Systemic approaches. * Mintzberg stated there are prescriptive (what should be) and descriptive (what is) approaches. Prescriptive schools are "one size fits all" approaches that designate "best practice" while descriptive schools describe how strategy is implemented in specific contexts. No single strategic managerial method dominates, and remains a subjective and context-dependent process. -------------------------------------------------

[edit]Strategy formation (Classical school)
The initial task in strategic management is typically the compilation and...
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