Road Maps and Strategies


What is the difference between road map and strategy?

Gary's Answer: 

People can use the term “strategy” any way they want, but the technical meaning of the term is “a potential course of action in a given situation.” Since competitive situations are always changing, the right analogy is not really a road map, because roads do not change. Strategy is not planning. The only plan that always works is the plan to adapt to unpredictable conditions.

A better analogy for strategy is the charts used for sailing. Sailing is like strategy because it requires constant adjustment to changing conditions. You use chart to figure out where you might be in relation to land, the currents, and the trade winds, but you must based your actual course upon what is happening at the exact place and time in which you are situated. You can chart a course, but your actual coarse depends more or less completely on the condition that you encounter. You cannot plan where you turn or even when, your every action is dictate not by the chart, though it is helpful, but by conditions.

It might make it clearer to think of these issues in terms of competitive sports. You go into a game with an idea of what you want to do, but so does the other team. In any competitive arena, plans collide, resulting in conditions that no one plans. What you do next depends on what has happened and what is happening, not on the “road map.”