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Strategic Thinking: Strategy's Orphan

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An overview of strategic thinking, with a particular focus on how to do environmental scanning to provide information and data to inform that thinking.

An overview of strategic thinking, with a particular focus on how to do environmental scanning to provide information and data to inform that thinking.

Published in: Business, Technology

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  • This is a great presentation and the caliber of presentation I would vote up for. The illustrations, the strategic thinking, the structure of the presentation and you name it are all first class. This is a great reading for every one.
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  • Maree - great presentation - have referenced your presentation in my latest Slide Show - 'Selection Criteria - Shapes Strategic Thinking'. http://www.slideshare.net/CAMILLS59/shapes-strategic-thinking-selection-criteria
    Thanks
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    • 1. Strategic Thinking: Strategy’s Orphan Maree Conway Thinking Futures
    • 2. A bit about me Long and good career in CAEs, TAFE, universities 2007….integrating long term thinking into strategy development, using futures approaches Managed their planning units 1999-2005 2005-2007
    • 3.
      • A bit of theory around strategic thinking
      • Process
      • Environmental Scanning
      • Take-aways
      This Presentation
    • 4.  
    • 5.  
    • 6. Improvement action identified/changes to plans identified Making VU 2016: A Statement of Purpose Strategic vision and objectives University Priorities 2008-2010 Outcomes & Strategies to implement Unit Strategic Plans 2008-2010 Faculties, Schools & Service areas Implementation of University Priority strategies
      • Internal & External Planning Inputs
      • Ongoing environmental scanning
      • Educational & societal trends
      • Government policy drivers
      • Legislation
      • University cross-sectoral strategies
      • Other University Plans (eg OHS, Disability, Staff Equity etc)
      SPDP: individual Staff Plans Quality Improvement Reviews (QIRs) Approval of operational plans Review of current year ’ s performance Reviewed each year in first half of year Reviewed and updated in August/September; finalised following QIRs in November Held in November each year University Budget Process Iterative process to align budgets and plans Budget sign-off at end September Quarterly Budget Reviews Department Plans Current until 2016 QIR Inputs Organisational Unit QIR Portfolios Faculty Review Outcomes Annual Course Reporting Course Review Subject Evaluation Outcomes AQTF outcomes AUQA Follow up
    • 7.
      • The plan itself is not the critical element of your planning process.
      • It’s the process and the thinking that goes into the decisions about what goes into your plan.
    • 8.
      • Everyone can think strategically if that capacity is surfaced and used.
      • Tapping into strategic thinking across the organisation increases the likelihood of successful implementation.
      Strategic Thinking
    • 9. Strategy without people is strategy without a future...
    • 10. You want me to think about what!!
    • 11. You develop strategy for the FUTURE to inform decision making and action today
    • 12. Too many decisions to make, not enough time or information to make them properly?
    • 13.
      • Positioning
      • Fit
      • Distinctiveness
      • Impact
      • Long term context for decision making today
    • 14. Strategic Thinking Generating Options What might happen? Strategic Decision Making Making choices What will we do? Strategic Planning Taking Action How will we do it? Options Decisions Actions
    • 15. Strategic Thinking
      • Long Term Thinking
      • Foresight
      • Futures Thinking
      • Out of the box
      • Taking a big picture AND long picture view of your context
    • 16. Strategic Decision Making
    • 17. Strategic Planning Document Implement Track Monitor Report
    • 18. We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them (Albert Einstein).
    • 19. Challenge your assumptions
    • 20. Old thinking…
    • 21. New thinking…
    • 22. New thinking…
    • 23. New thinking…
    • 24. The Broad Process
    • 25.
      • Environmental scanning is at the heart of your strategy development process.
      • It locates your organisation in its external environment.
      • It combines information and data with the knowledge held by your staff.
    • 26. Making strategic decisions in an uncertain context
      • Focus
      • Worldviews
      • Involve many
      • Scan, analyse, interpret
      • Think and imagine
      • Test, question, challenge
      • Ensure relevance and plausibility for your organisation
            • THEN
      • Decide, write your plan, implement and monitor
    • 27.  
    • 28. Long-term TIME HORIZON Short-term
      • Narrow SCOPE OF INFORMATION GATHERING Broad
        • Adapted from Choo, Information Management for the Intelligent Organization, 1998
      Where environmental scanning fits… Competitor Intelligence understanding the nature of our competitors and their likely responses to change Competitive Intelligence understanding how our competitors interact with the business and market environment in which they operate Business Intelligence understanding the present and future environments with a focus on future competitive environments Environmental Scanning developing a broad understanding of the external environment Social Intelligence understanding how a country uses its intelligence (knowledge industry and information networks) to meet its developmental challenges Future View building a long-term foresight view about the future of the country and the planet
    • 29. Types of Futures Time Today Futures Cone developed by Clem Bezold Possible Plausible Probable Preferable Scenario “ Wildcard”
    • 30. Where to Focus ES Time Today (Trends) ( Deep Drivers) Plausible Probable
    • 31.
      • How robust do we want our planning inputs to be?
      • Breadth – how wide are we looking?
      • Depth – are seriously are we questioning?
      • Distance – how far ahead are we looking?
      Why do it this way?
    • 32. Doing ES
    • 33. Open Minds
    • 34.
      • What might seem real to you probably won’t seem as real to the next person.
      • How you filter information to create meaning is critical to understand.
      Perceptions
    • 35.
      • Need to challenge your filters so that you don’t miss anything that might be important.
      • Understand your filters and those for whom you are doing the scanning.
      • And…try and understand the worldviews of the people you are scanning.
      Worldviews
    • 36. Worldviews What might you miss because of your worldview and internal filters?
    • 37.
      • Blind spots emerge from the past.
      • What changes were missed in the past and why?
        • In what areas?
      • Who in your industry has fewer blind spots/picks up weak signals better than others?
      Blind Spots
    • 38. Blind Spots What might we miss because of our blind spots?
    • 39. Then decide who scans
      • Staff
      • Executive Team
      • Board
      • Someone has to coordinate, manage and communicate findings
    • 40.
      • But…they have to be trained.
    • 41. Focus
    • 42.
      • Lots of information out there, so how to focus effort?
      Focusing your Scanning
    • 43.
      • What is the key strategic issue?
        • This is the focal question.
      • What do we need to know about the issue?
        • These are the factors that will influence the decision.
      • What are trends and drivers of change affecting these factors?
        • This becomes the focus for environmental scanning:
          • industry specific, and
          • broad, global forces.
      The anchor
    • 44.
      • So, the core of scanning work is looking for trends and emerging issues that relate to the strategic issue or focal question now and into the future.
      The anchor
    • 45. What do you look for?
    • 46. Organisation Industry Learning Educational Gaming Funding Engagement Online Sustainability Vocational Imperative The External Environment
    • 47. Organisation Global Industry Technology Lifestyle Values Politics Economy Environment Demographics & generational change Learning Educational Gaming Funding Engagement Online Sustainability Vocational Imperative The External Environment Globalisation
    • 48. Organisation Global Industry Technology Lifestyle Values Politics Economy Environment Demographics & generational change Learning Educational Gaming Funding Engagement Online Sustainability Vocational Imperative The External Environment Globalisation Wildcard Wildcard Wildcard Wildcard
    • 49. Trends And Emerging Issues Emerging Issues Trends Mainstream Time Number of cases; degree of public awareness Few cases, local focus Global, multiple dispersed cases, trends and megatrends Adapted from the work of Graham Molitor and Wendy Schultz, and Everett Rogers Innovators Early adopters Late Adopters Late Majority Laggards Today Time from emerging issue to mainstream varies between 18-36 years
    • 50. Trends And Emerging Issues Emerging Issues Trends Mainstream Time Number of cases; degree of public awareness Scientists, artists, radicals, mystics Newspapers, magazines, websites, journals Government Institutions Few cases, local focus Global, multiple dispersed cases, trends and megatrends Adapted from the work of Graham Molitor and Wendy Schultz, and Everett Rogers Innovators Early adopters Late Adopters Late Majority Laggards Today Time from emerging issue to mainstream varies between 18-36 years
    • 51. Trends And Emerging Issues Emerging Issues Trends Mainstream Time Number of cases; degree of public awareness Scientists, artists, radicals, mystics Newspapers, magazines, websites, journals Government Institutions Few cases, local focus Global, multiple dispersed cases, trends and megatrends Adapted from the work of Graham Molitor and Wendy Schultz, and Everett Rogers Innovators Early adopters Late Adopters Late Majority Laggards Today Time from emerging issue to mainstream varies between 18-36 years Most scanning takes place here
    • 52. Trends And Emerging Issues Emerging Issues Trends Mainstream Time Number of cases; degree of public awareness Scientists, artists, radicals, mystics Newspapers, magazines, websites, journals Government Institutions Few cases, local focus Global, multiple dispersed cases, trends and megatrends Adapted from the work of Graham Molitor and Wendy Schultz, and Everett Rogers Innovators Early adopters Late Adopters Late Majority Laggards Today Time from emerging issue to mainstream varies between 18-36 years But we need to look on the fringe as well
    • 53.
      • Extrapolations of the past and present, not future facts
      • Counter-trends
      • Wildcards
      • Uncertain future trajectories
      • What assumptions underpin your thinking?
      Using Trends But don’t get lost in the data smog!
    • 54.
      • Trends don’t tell you anything – someone has to interpret the trend for it to be meaningful.
      • Otherwise you are engaged in trend spotting/watching as opposed to trend analysis .
      Using Trends
    • 55.
      • Starts with a shift in values/perspectives – need to search at the fringes
      • Emergence – people start to talk about it, but a minority – easier to influence now
      • Champion – look for the thought leaders and rebels
      • Defining event – brings the issue to public attention – morphs into a trend/harder to shape and influence
      Emerging Issues Analysis
    • 56.
      • Because emerging issues are weak, obscure, crazy, and fragile, good practical people usually ignore or ridicule them. Since these “useful” ideas are not part of their commonsense, people conclude they are nonsense.
      • And this fact led me to formulate Dator’s Second Law of the Future. Namely, “Any useful idea about the future should appear to be ridiculous”.
      Emerging Issues Analysis Jim Dator, US Futurist
    • 57.
      • Particularly useful for challenging long held assumptions about how things will be.
      • Good for ‘what if’ questions.
      Emerging Issues
    • 58.
      • How will I separate weak signals of real change from the noise?
      Emerging Issues
    • 59.
      • First, assume you miss important signals
      • Use the ‘three times’ test
      • Test ideas with others inside and outside
      • Trust intuition
      • Test the signal in the future
      • Where are the outliers? What are your mavericks saying?
      Emerging Issues
    • 60. Where to Look
    • 61.
      • Newspapers, websites, blogs, wikis, podcasts, videos, news sites, newsletter, magazines, books, book reviews, presentations, reports, surveys, interviews, seminars, chat rooms, trend observers, advertisers, philosophers sociologists, management gurus, consultants, researchers, experts, universities.
      Where to look…
    • 62.
      • Trendwatching
      • Future Scanner
      • Brain Reserve
      • Shaping Tomorrow
      • Now and Next
      • The Tomorrow Project
      • SRIC-BI
      • Arlington Institute (wildcards)
      Some Scanning Sites
    • 63.
      • Identify opinion leaders, the voice in the wilderness on the fringe:
        • Expert
        • Professional
        • Pundit
        • Amateur
        • Fringe
      Looking for…
    • 64.
      • New
      • First
      • Idea
      • Change
      • Surprise
      • Opportunity
      • Threat
      Looking for…
    • 65.
      • Ideally, a scan hit identifies an emerging issue that is objectively new even to experts, confirms or is confirmed by additional scan hits, and that has been identified in time for social dialogue, impact assessment, and policy formation.
      • Wendy Schultz, Infinite Futures 2004
      Looking for…
    • 66.
      • We need to engage in outrageous thinking about learning environments. Now, I realize that outrageous means exceeding all bounds of reasonableness; it means something shocking. However, I think that we need to deal with concepts of space and education that are indeed shocking. We need to realize that reasonableness is defined by present context. We further need to realize that what is unreasonableness today may be very reasonable in the 21 st century and it is for the 21 st century that we are contemplating education space.
      • Hunkins, Reinventing Learning Spaces, 1994
      • http://www.newhorizons.org/strategies/learning_environments/hunkins.html
      Thinking Outrageously
    • 67. Do your analysis in a group, not as individuals. The aim is to look for divergence and value difference – many voices, not just the loudest. Explore what might be possible for your organisation. Then, consider what is possible today.
    • 68. Analysis
    • 69. Some questions to ask
      • Whose voice is being heard?
      • Who says this is fact or fiction?
      • Who wins, who loses? Who gets left behind?
      • What are we missing?
      • Then ask, what does it mean for us?
      • What are the opportunities?
    • 70. Identify the trends that are most relevant for your organisation. Look for inter-connections and cross impacts among the trends Use scenario planning to explore what might happen in the future. Assume nothing. Dismiss nothing.
    • 71. Strategic Thinking Generating Options What might happen? Strategic Decision Making Making choices What will we do? Strategic Planning Taking Action How will we do it? Options Decisions Actions
    • 72. Make the decision
    • 73. Write the plan
    • 74.  
    • 75. Convincing your people
      • Knowing how to do it is one thing, but…how do you convince your people that this is worth doing?
    • 76. Convincing your people
      • CEO with an open mind - willing to listen and hear alternative ideas
      • Organisation that recognises the need to change – the present doesn’t work any more
      • Willingness to open the strategy process up to staff – not being afraid of losing control
    • 77. How?
      • Staff driven environmental scanning process
      • Representative reference group – staff from across the organisation
      • Staff Workshop before the Board/Executive workshop – identify what staff think is important in the future
      • Strategy Workshop – staff, Executive, Board and externals
      • Communication plan
    • 78. How?
      • Be brave…
    • 79. Take-Aways
    • 80.
      • Take the time to make this work…and it will take time.
    • 81. Involve your people from the beginning
    • 82. Continuous Activity
      • Environmental scanning
      • Regular strategic events
      • Tap into global networks (they do a lot of the work for you)
      • Make it someone’s job.
    • 83. Question and challenge all those assumptions that underpin how you see the world - and what you don’t see.
    • 84. ...because what works today will probably not work for those who follow you in the future...
    • 85.  
    • 86.  
    • 87. Most importantly, it’s about being ready for the future rather than waiting for it to bite you...
    • 88. Questions?