HOT: The 4 Stages Strategic Thinking

I’ve gotten a couple of requests from alums to post some of the material that I’m now pitching to current classes.

So today, I’m posting the first HOT – Homa Online Tutorial – something right out of the classroom to you via the HomaFiles.

Some stuff will be classic, some will be edgy; some will be original, some will be “borrowed” from other sources (with proper attribution of course).

Here’s the first HOT topic …

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Great Strategy

In my Advanced Marketing Strategy introduction, I tell students that the course goal is to get them to “internalize a mindset geared to creating great marketing strategies.”

That raises a logical question: what’s a “great” strategy … as opposed to a “good” strategy.

I try to put “great” in the context of the 4 stages strategic thinking.

click for the online tutorial “The 4 Stages of Strategic Thinking” (4:30 min)


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Synopsis: The 4 Stages of Strategic Thinking

Companies can be at one of 4 levels of strategic thinking.

Level 1 is “reactionary” … responding to market and forces as they happen … hoping to make it through this day and see the sun come up tomorrow … and rejoicing when it does (think, my dog Captain)

Level 2 is “remedial” … proactively stop doing dumb stuff … and try doing mostly the same things, just a bit better … often by benchmarking companies with best practices and trying to emulate them. Consultants make mucho $$$ on these folks … taking the #3 company in an industry and telling them to be like #1 … in hopes of overtaking #2.

Level 3 is “resourceful” … think typical MBA training … analyze SWOTs, assess competitive advantages, find “white spaces” or “blue oceans” … basically fit the existing world and play by the rules.

Level 4 is “revolutionary” … try to change the way the game is played … alter the rules of the business to your company’s unique advantage … think, FedEx, early Netflix or Apple iPad … don’t just report the weather, create it.

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One Response to “HOT: The 4 Stages Strategic Thinking”

  1. Mike Says:

    Love the concept of “HOT”. Great addition to the blog. When will you take ownership of @Kenhoma or @Homafiles?

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