Strategic Thinking in Developing Effective Strategies

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Universiti Utara Malaysia

Strategic Thinking in Developing Effective Strategies
A Review of the Literature

BPMN 6023: Strategic Management

Lecturer: Assoc. Professor Dr Saari

Prepared by:
Lim Yew Wei

1.0 Introduction3-5

2.0 Definition of Subject5-6

3.0 1st Articles : Implication of Intuition for Strategic thinking: Practical Recommendations for Gut Thinker6-9

4.0 2nd Articles : Management Framework Guiding Strategic Thinking In Rapidly Changing Markets10-15
5.0 3rd Articles : Thinking Strategically About Thinking Strategically 15-19

6.0 4th Articles : Strategy Thinking - Learn to Optimize Its Power20-22

7.0 5th Articles : The Need for Strategic Management of Disasters23-24

8.0 Summary 24-25

Reference 26

1.0 Introduction
Strategic thinking is defined as the generation and application of business insights on a continual basis to achieve competitive advantage. Strategic thinking is different than strategic planning. Strategic planning is the channeling of business insights into an action plan to achieve goals and objectives. A key distinction between strategic thinking and strategic planning is that the former occurs on a regular basis, as part of our daily activities, while the latter occurs periodically (quarterly, semi-annually or annually). Unlike the additional work that is created by the process of strategic planning, we can understand strategic thinking as using a new lens to view the business. It’s not about adding more work. It’s about enhancing the view of the work and improving one’s ability to perform it. Strategic thinking, a key thought process of strategic management framework; is defined as the generation and application of unique business insights and opportunities, to create competitive advantage for a firm or organization. It can be done individually, as well as collaboratively among key people who can positively alter an organization’s future. Group strategic thinking creates more value by enabling a proactive and creative dialogue. We gain other people's perspectives on critical and complex issues which is an important benefit in today's highly competitive and fast-changing business landscape. Strategic thinking is about finding and developing a strategic foresight capacity for an organization, by exploring all possible organizational futures, and challenging conventional thinking to foster decision making today. Recent strategic thought points ever more clearly towards the conclusion that the critical strategic question is not the conventional “What?”, but “Why?” or “How?” The work of Henry Mintzberg and other authors further support the conclusion; and also draw a clear distinction between strategic thinking and strategic planning, another important strategic management thought process While there is no generally accepted definition for strategic thinking, no common agreement as to its role or importance, and no standardized list of key competencies of strategic thinkers; most agree that traditional models of strategy making, which are primarily based on strategic planning, are not working. Strategy in today's competitive business landscape is moving away from the basic ‘strategic planning’ to more of ‘strategic thinking’ in order to remain competitive. However, both thought processes must work hand-in-hand in order to reap maximum benefit. It has been argued that the real heart of strategy is the 'strategist'; and for a better strategy execution requires a strategic thinker who can discover novel, imaginative strategies which can re-write the rules of the competitive game; and set in motion the chain of events that will that will shape and "define the future". So, the ability to think strategically is essential for individuals and organizations. The real question is how we can continually hone our strategic thinking skills in order to...
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