Manual Dynamic Strategy-Making: A Real-Time Approach for the 21st Century Leader

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Powerful business solutions to the current chaos facing many organizations today. Dean Anderson and Linda Ackerman Anderson get to the heart of change, the human touch, by using timeless techniques and tools. Having applied this methodology for two years to manage change inside Microsoft, it has been instrumental in our ability to land change effectively, engage employees and deliver results quickly. This is the most complete change methodology we have found anywhere.

The book describes the change process in nine distinct phases and outlines the activities and tasks that need to occur in each phase. It provides change leaders with an essential map for successfully traversing the complex and uncertain terrain of transformational change.

Thomas G. This is the next best thing to having Dean, Linda and the Being First team riding alongside your complex change initiative. Nothing I have seen in my 32 years of leading change comes close. A practical, step-by-step guide for change leaders, managers and consultants.

The book provides conceptually grounded, real world, time tested tools and guidance that will prove invaluable to those faced with navigating the challenges of leading organizational change in today's turbulent times. Robert J. Marshak, Ph. Command and Control Is Based on a Number of Erroneous Assumptions Command and control is based on establishing and maintaining power over, and control of, people and organizational processes.

Needing to alter change plans connotes leadership failure and means that the change leaders did not plan thoroughly enough You can argue that these assumptions are somewhat applicable for two types of organizational change—developmental and transitional change. Our consistent findings over the past twenty years suggest: 1. Summary Every day there are more decent change tools available on the market. Melvin Gooding Graet article. Sep 17, am. Mar 21, am. Steven Great article. Jul 21, pm. Oct 26, pm. Dec 14, am. Post a Comment Your email is never published nor shared.

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Endorsements With this extensively upgraded second edition, Dean Anderson and Linda Ackerman Anderson solidify their status as the leading authorities on change leadership and organizational transformation. Ken Wilber Author, The Integral Vision, A Brief History of Everything, and over a dozen other best-sellers Dean and Linda are core to the field of conscious change leadership, and continue to stretch and push its boundaries in this rich and deep compendium. Ken Blanchard Co-Author of The One Minute Manager and Leading at a Higher Level Having applied this methodology for two years to manage change inside Microsoft, it has been instrumental in our ability to land change effectively, engage employees and deliver results quickly.

Jeff Mulligan Former CEO, Common Wealth Credit Union Mayor, City of Lloydminster After implementing more than business strategy and operational excellence initiatives, we set out to find the best change methodology and toolbox in the world. The methodology this book describes is it! Study it thoroughly, because the thinking, process approach and pragmatic tools really work! Copyright c Being First, Inc. The site offered discounts at Expedia and Best Buy and the opportunity to get tax refunds in the form of prepaid gift cards.

The campaign was a flop, and practically no one used the site. Signal detection and experimentation require a company to think beyond its own boundaries and perhaps to work more closely and smartly with customers and suppliers. This flies somewhat in the face of the unspoken assumption that the unit of analysis for strategy is a single company or business unit. With an increasing amount of economic activity occurring beyond corporate boundaries—through outsourcing, offshoring, value nets, value ecosystems, peer production, and the like—we need to think about strategies not only for individual companies but also for dynamic business systems.

Increasingly, industry structure is better characterized as competing webs or ecosystems of codependent companies than as a handful of competitors producing similar goods and services and working on a stable, distant, and transactional basis with their suppliers and customers. In such an environment advantage will flow to those companies that can create effective strategies at the network or system level. Adaptive companies are therefore learning how to push activities outside the company without benefiting competitors and how to design and evolve strategies for networks without necessarily being able to rely on strong control mechanisms.

5 Keys to Success for the Strategic Leader

Typically, adaptive companies manage their ecosystems by using common standards to foster interaction with minimal barriers. If the experience curve and the scale curve were the key indicators of success, Nokia would still be leading the smartphone market. But it was attacked by an adaptive ecosystem. If the experience curve and the scale curve were the key indicators of success, Nokia would still be leading the smartphone market; it had the advantage of being an early mover and the market share leader with a strong cost position.

The ability to bring together the assets and capabilities of so many entities allowed these smartphone entrants to leapfrog the experience curve and become new market leaders in record time. Adaptation is necessarily local in nature—somebody experiments first at a particular place and time. It is also necessarily global in nature, because if the experiment succeeds, it will be communicated, selected, amplified, and refined.

Top 5 Leadership Skills for the Workplace of Tomorrow

Organizations therefore need to create environments that encourage the knowledge flow, diversity, autonomy, risk taking, sharing, and flexibility on which adaptation thrives. Contrary to classical strategic thinking, strategy follows organization in adaptive companies. A flexible structure and the dispersal of decision rights are powerful levers for increasing adaptability. Typically, adaptive companies have replaced permanent silos and functions with modular units that freely communicate and recombine according to the situation at hand.

To reinforce this framework, it is helpful to have weak or competing power structures and a culture of constructive conflict and dissent. Cisco is one company that has made this transformation. Early on, it relied on a hierarchical, customer-centric organization to become a leader in the market for network switches and routers. More recently the CEO, John Chambers, has created a novel management structure of cross-functional councils and boards to facilitate moves into developing countries and 30 adjacent and diverse markets ranging from health care to sports with greater agility than would previously have been possible.

As they create more-fluid structures, adaptive companies drive decision making down to the front lines, allowing the people most likely to detect changes in the environment to respond quickly and proactively. For example, at Whole Foods the basic organizational unit is the team, and each store has about eight teams.

Team leaders—not national buyers—decide what to stock. Teams have veto power over new hires.

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And they are rewarded for their performance with bonuses based on store profitability over the previous four weeks. Creating decentralized, fluid, and even competing organizational structures destroys the big advantage of a rigid hierarchy, which is that everyone knows precisely what he or she should be doing.

click For example, Netflix values nine core behaviors and skills in its employees: judgment, communication, impact, curiosity, innovation, courage, passion, honesty, and selflessness. Becoming an adaptive competitor can be difficult, especially for large, established organizations. Typically, these companies are oriented toward managing scale and efficiency, and their hierarchical structures and fixed routines lack the diversity and flexibility needed for rapid learning and change.

Such management paradigms die hard, especially when they have historically been the basis for success. However, several tactics have proved effective at fostering adaptive advantage even in established companies. To the managers involved, they may look like nothing more than an extension of business as usual, but in fact they create a context in which adaptive capabilities can thrive.


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If you are the CEO of a large company that wants to be more adaptive, challenge your managers to:. Fast-changing industries are characterized by the presence of disruptive mavericks—often entirely new players, sometimes from other sectors. Get your managers to put aside the traditional single-business forecast and instead examine the risks and uncertainties that could significantly affect the company.

Most companies have a portfolio of strategic initiatives. It should become the engine that drives your organization into adaptability—and it can, with a couple of simple enhancements. First, every significant source of uncertainty should be addressed with an initiative. Depending on the nature of the uncertainty, the goal of the initiative may be responding to a neglected business trend, creating options for responding to it down the line, or simply learning more about it.

In managing these initiatives, your company should be as disciplined with metrics, time frames, and responsibilities as it would be for the product portfolio or the operating plan. Now close your eyes and picture one. We believe that a better understanding of the history of strategy and what caused the demise of binder-bound strategic planning can point the way to re-inventing strategy for the world we live in today. Military strategy focuses on setting objectives, collecting intelligence, and then using that intelligence to make informed decisions about how to achieve your objectives—take that hill, cut this supply line.

Not surprisingly, after a couple of millennia, military strategy became well adapted to these constraints.

After World War II, when military strategy came into the business world as strategic planning, so did these constraints. As a result, strategic planners focused on predicting the future based on historic trend lines; invested heavily in gathering all available data; and produced a small number of directives issued from the top, for the rest of the organization to execute. This approach to strategic planning was a reasonably good fit for much of the business world from the fifties through the eighties.

But with the rise of high-tech tools and increased globalization in the nineties, the world began to change, and now it looks quite different indeed. The future is no longer reasonably predictable based on the past—in fact, it is liable to be startlingly different. Good data is easy to access and cheap to acquire. Communication is rapid, indiscriminate, and constant. This has left organizational leaders with a real problem, since the trusted, traditional approach to strategic planning is based on assumptions that no longer hold.