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Strategy Formulation
Organize Your Thinking

The Research

In this chapter, I describe basic quantitative methods and models to organize your data, often in "strategy maps." The maps, or models, help the team discuss relationships, strategies and tactics. You will assign team members to do or organize the research: they do the research, find the data that already exists in the the firm, or have consultants do it.

In the next chapter, Methods to Prioritize Opportunities, we will combine these individual assessments to identify opportunities, threats, strengths and weaknesses using several variations of the classic SWOT.

Your strategic planning team will analyze the supply side, which are your processes strengths and weaknesses, and demand side, which are your customer opportunities and competitive threats. My recent experience is that senior executives are very well informed about their industry and Google has made the process simpler. I usually recommend you ask team members to study the long term trends in areas that are not their responsibility and then to present solutions in their areas of responsibility. The first step broadens their perspectives; the second step relies on their experience.

This chapter goes into detail about the various approaches and theoretical models you can use. Put the mouse over the blue buttons to see the research focus for each three methods: scenarios to identify future markets, bottom-up/entrepreneur to create new product or a new vision, or team-based forecasting to align the organization to the vision. Your objective is to assess the data quickly at a reasonable cost. Blend these suggestions to your situation.

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