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Is Your Strategy a Wine Glass or a Plastic Cup? Orlando Growth Summit

Posted by Douglas A Wick on Wed, Oct 20, 2010

Plastic cupVerne Harnish’s focus on the first day of the Growth Summit Strategy provided some insightful ideas about strategy.   Here’s the one that I thought was most thought provoking.  Is your strategy a plastic cup or a fine wine glass? describe the image This question asks you to make a gut reaction to your strategy.  That’s a good way to say do you feel solid about it or not?  If you tapped your glass with a spoon would it get knocked over or would it hold up and ring true?

How do you feel about your strategy now?

Some short observations about strategy included: Maybe the reason you don’t have a strategy is you don’t have the right people.  If you bring in the right people you’ll have the help you need to create the right strategy. 

I’m planning to write another blog about why I feel getting your strategy right is your first step to running a “lean” organization.  In reality if you don’t get your strategy right you're going to be wasting 3-5 years of your time pursuing the wrong things. 

We discussed the importance of strategic planning in my last blog.  I’d like to provide you with a short version of Verne’s Seven Strata of Strategy.  Look for the longer explanation in my newsletter this month along with an opportunity to download Verne’s version. 

Here’s Verne’s Seven Strata of Strategy:

  1. Own a word or two.
  2. Declare your Brand Promise.
  3. Establish a catalytic mechanism
  4. Create a One Phrase Strategy. [This is different from owning a word or two is more internal than external.]
  5. Outline Your Differentiating Activities.
  6. Discover your X-Factor.
  7. Define your BHAG and Profit per X.

Your business needs to be able to state your strategy simply.  It should be in one sentence or less.  Of course just because it simple doesn’t mean it’s simple to do. 

Day two of the Growth Summit was exceptional.  Robert Bloom offered some disturbing news about customer loyalty and the New ExpertsJohn Warrillow provided insights into what you need to do to get your business ready to sell.  Rich Russakoff, [who wrote chapter ten on bank financing in Mastering the Rockefeller Habits] has written a book, Make Banks Compete to Lend You Money and gave us some new math that shows how 1+1+1 = 19 in your business.  David Meerman Scott emphasized the importance of real time marketing and why scale and media buying power no longer are a decisive competitive advantage.  Finally Rosetta Stone CEO Tom Adams gave us insights into global scale, taking a company public and how important creating culture is for his business.  More on these in the blogs ahead.  

Topics: strategy, Brand Promise, X Factor, One Phrase Strategy

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The Strategic Discipline Blog focuses on midsize business owners with a ravenous appetite to improve his or her leadership skills and business results.

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