“Driving Radical Change” by Josep Isern and Caroline Pung

The article gave two necessities for experiencing and initiating successful change in the company. The two necessities to change are setting an appropriate and inspiring aspiration or vision, which allows the benefits of change to come alive to everyone in organization. The second is mobilizing ans sustaining the transformation engine by infusing energy. The majority of the article of outlined the guidelines for these necessities to change. I have outlined them below:


Setting Aspirations – Getting off to a good start.

  • Define – Underline the importance of the change.
  • Design – Develop the architecture of the change to unsure understanding and mobility.
  • Focus – Bring the well defined and architected aspiration to reality by setting goals that allow people to be the right page.
  • Story – Communicate the story so to inspire and allow others to understand.

Energy and Ideas—to fuel the engine!

  • Ideas – Asking the who, what, how, why questions will open brilliant doors of opportunity for change
  • Energy – Catalysts to react with burst of energy!
  • Impact – Measure impact by initiating smaller set of high impact energy
  • Embed – Make change a commitment.
  • Personalize – Inspire through role models of changers.
  • Capabilities – Build new capabilities when things feel stale and stagnant.

Keep the Brand, Keep the Customer by Kumar

As a marketing major, I enjoyed reading about the importance of brand strategy. The article began by describing how companies have had to create extensions and multiple brands due to niche and global marketing. With this extension, many times the brand and it importance is lost in translation. To keep the brand and its strategy held on high regard consider these steps:

  1. Make the Case: by understanding the brand weakness, strength, etc so that profitable brands are recognized and promoted (found profitable).
  2. Audit the brand: use the auditing information as a springboard for the future.
  3. Prune the Portfolio: Use different tactic, to asses the portfolio of brands and promote what is most profitable or develop in gapping areas.
  4. Liquidating the brands: by possible mergers or sell-offs
  5. Growing the Core brand: By creative in implementing new ways to grow and seek opportunities.

The DNA of Innovation by Dobni

In this article from the Journal of Business Strategy, a survey was taken among business management that concluded that innovation is important in discovering and developing a competitive advantage. It breaks down the make up of innovation and calls it the DNA. The sequence of innovation DNA is the following: Knowledge Management, Cluster Management, Value Management, and Alignment Management. From these splices of DNA, outcomes and impact occur which stimulate sustainable competitive advantage.

Final Food for Thought (CH 9 Strategy Bites Back)

                I found this short article in the last chapter to be quite entertaining. The article excerpt is “Recipes for Cooking Strategy.” As I enjoy to cook, I related well to the lingo of boil, melt, whisk and so on. Although the recipes of strategy and love of strategy may have been a stretch to see, the concept is there regarding the formation of strategy and how the environment, stakeholders, financials, and business structure apply to the strategy as a whole. The recipe is generic but most definitely seems to be a starting point although I believe the recipe to be unique in all different business settings, atmospheres and companies.

When You Shouldn’t Go Global by Marcus Alexander and Harry Korine

Although globalization of a strategy can save companies, launching a global move can be detrimental if it does not align with strategic options in the future. Senior managers can conduct a simple self assessment to gauge the likeliness of success globally. Look at the ideas of assessment and practice below:

Part 1: Ill-Fated Strategies

  1. Are there potential benefits for our company? – Aligning opportunities to benefits.
  2. Do we have the necessary management skills? – Aligning opportunities with resources.
  3. Will the costs out weigh the benefits? – Aligning the benefits with financial stability.

Beyond the test questions, understanding the industry and the needs for globalization and dangers of entering is important too.

Part 2: Globalization’s song

-Deregulated industries: many businesses today face growth opportunities that frequently cost far too much to enter.

– Service Industries

– Manufacturing Industries: Globalization is about the only way for them to grow beyond their means (many times but not every time).

Part 3: Continuing Danger

As companies recklessly pursue global expansion, the challenges and dangers of monetary loss and brand dismissal must be recognized.

Is Yours a Learning Organization? By David Garvin and Amy Edmondson

In this article the authors outline the tools used to pinpoint areas where a company needs to foster knowledge, idea development, learning from mistakes, and holistic thinking. In the volatile and unpredictable business  environment and competition, the tool set listed below can help organizations learn from others and their past.

Beginning with Building blocks,

Building block 1: A supportive learning environment: Physiologically safe, openness of ideas, appreciation of differences and reflection.

Building block 2: Concrete learning processes and practices: the cultivation should be effortless and be a process  and practice within the company.

Building Block 3: Leadership that reinforces learning.

Four principle of moving forward,

  1. Leadership alone is insufficient. – the company culture must reflect an atmosphere that values leaning the progress that comes from learning.
  2. Organizations are not monolithic. – Leaders must realize that a one-size-fits-all strategy for implementing learning is not successful.  
  3. Comparative performance is the critical scorecard. – Openness to new ideas and education/ training allow for higher scorecards.
  4. Learning is multidimensional. – Solving a single area of learning difficulty will not make an organization learn.

The tool of building blocks and four steps to moving do not define a learning organization but rather a mere report card of where a company lies in fostering learning fundamentals.

Laws of Power (CH 8) by Robert Greene and Joost Elffers

Greene and Elffers’ book The 48 Laws of Power review great political philosophers, conmen, and figures of all time who are known for their strategic excellence. He gives characteristics of the successes of power:

–          Conceal your Intentions – By keeping people in the dark they will follow you regardless of weather they believe or not.

–          Win Through your actions, never through arguments – Demonstrate rather than explain.

–          Use the surrender tactic – transform your weaknesses into power because surrender can give you time to recover.

–          Re-create yourself- Forge new identities that command attention and entertain an audience.

–          Master the art of Timing – Always seem patient because hurrying betrays a lack of control.

Although these are only five of the 48 laws mentioned in this gives example to how political figures regain and sustain power which can also be seen as true in all executive strategic planning and execution.

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