Strategic Preparation Model

A reader writes:

Kindly advise if there is a standard generic Strategy Preparation Model that can be used for guidance to develop/ establish a new strategy.

The answer to this question depends what we mean by “preparation.” If we mean preparing the individual to make better decisions and tools for helping them, the answer is yes. If we mean preparing a written document or plan relating to a the current, specific, strategic situation of group that people within that group can refer to for any period of time to find the right procedures, the answer is no.

We completely understand people’s desire to create strategy as a written plan, that is what we are trained to do in school, but as we explain in our many articles on Planning and Strategy we view such plans as based on a fundamental misunderstanding of competitive environments.

Sun Tzu's strategy is a method for reacting to conditions. Sun Tzu's strategy is based on our need to constantly adapt as conditions change, events unfold, and new information is uncovered. Since competitive environments are turbulent and chaotic, the strategic process is a continual adaptive loop. Our Strategic Book of knowledge (S-RULE) provides a consistent, comprehensive method for improving strategic positions in that environment using the generic adaptive loop of listen-aim-move-claim.

The Rule Book provides both big-picture conceptual models dealing with basic strategic orientation and detailed situational models dealing with very specific sets of conditions.

Our challenge is making this range of information more immediately useful to people who have not yet taken the time to internalize the principles of The Rule Book through a period of strategic training. People need to connect their current competitive situation and its condition to the proper models for make better decisions about those conditions. Currently, the only tools for finding the right information is our members outline and list of general principle.

We will be developing more interactive tools that allows our Members to identify the most relevant information more quickly this year.

While many desire a written strategic document to "get everyone on the same page," experience shows that such plans are simply a snapshot of a strategic situation from a top-down perspective, outdated before they are put on paper, and fairly useless to people on the front-lines who make decisions. Such documents are a poor substitute for a shared vocabulary describing competitive situations and shared models for situation awareness and high-probability decision-making. Our goal is to develop an individual skills of adaptive situation awareness fo that groups can share their mental models ion a day-to-day, contact-to-contact basis. This allows individuals to work together and make the best possible decisions about their dynamic situation as a group.