9 Essentials for Strategy Success

9 Essentials for Strategy Success

Twice a year I host a Chief Officers’ Forum, where senior executive directors from some of the UK’s leading companies have a roundtable discussion on wide-ranging topics. At one of our meetings we agreed some golden rules for strategy development. Which of them could...
Why Strategy Retreats Don’t Work

Why Strategy Retreats Don’t Work

The annual off-site leadership meeting, when the top team spend time in a nice hotel to review performance and some longer-term objectives, is a ritual pursued by most companies. But, all too often, these strategy retreats are lost opportunities that produce, at best,...
How to Cut Costs Effectively

How to Cut Costs Effectively

I have been involved in several major cost reduction initiatives, adopting a variety of roles. My experience is that very few managers look positively on these projects and will do almost everything they can to avoid them.   The result is that relatively few cost...
The Best Strategy Conversations

The Best Strategy Conversations

The best strategy conversations start with two words: What if……   What if we became a truly digital business? What if we halved our product offering? What if we could double our speed to market? What if we were able to create completely bespoke solutions for all...

Why Consultant-Led Strategies Fail

If a tree falls in a forest and no-one is there to hear it, does it make a sound? Equally, if a new business strategy is developed and there is no-one willing to deliver it, did it ever really exist? One of the biggest mistakes executives with their strategy is that...
Service Without A Smile?

Service Without A Smile?

We’ve just returned from an enjoyable family holiday on the Algarve. Staying at the Penina Hotel near Alvor, I had a week of golf with my wife and three sons. I’ve played less than a dozen rounds over the past 10-15 years, so I was a little apprehensive about how I...
The Key To A Great Business Strategy

The Key To A Great Business Strategy

Last week, I met with an old client who shared with me his company’s latest strategy pack. The document, prescribed by the Group Head Office, was 126 pages long and full of analysis, charts, tables, graphs and action plans.   There was also one page in the pack...

The 5 Questions Your Strategy Should Answer

What is a strategy? This seemingly simple question can lead to a wide variety of answers. Some people will tell you that it’s a vision. Others will say it’s a plan of action. While others will talk about having a clear position in your market. My own view – and...

The Unbalanced Scorecard

My big problem with the Balanced Scorecard approach to strategy and performance management is that is, well, too balanced. It makes everything of equal importance. In most Balanced Scorecard projects and reports I’ve seen, there is a general assumption that all goals...

The 12 Characteristics of Strategic CEOs

No one in an organization has as much leverage as the CEO. From the moment you walk into the building on your first day (and probably before), everyone is scrutinizing your actions and behaviours. They are looking for patterns and inconsistencies. Others will rapidly...