Strategy In The Age Of Too Much: Why Google Maps Is Better Than SWOT

We live in a time of abundance. Abundance of choices, abundance of stuff, abundance of opportunities, abundance of aspirations, abundance of technologies, and above all, abundance of data and information. There is just so much coming on our path that we have no idea anymore what to pay attention to and which choices to make. We…

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Strategy In An Ambiguous World

This is the last in a series of four articles on what strategy should look like in a world that is volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA). In the previous three articles I outlined the demands put on strategy by a world that is volatile, uncertain and complex. In this last article I close this discussion with outlining how your…

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Strategy In A Complex World

Strategy as we know it, is all about simplicity. Organizations are supposed to choose from three or four generic strategies, come up with simple, preferably one-phrase mission and vision statements and ideally have one key objective to which everything else contributes. Furthermore, the strategy toolbox is full of simple models and two-by-two matrices  – SWOT, BCG matrix, growth matrix,…

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EasyJet Vs. Ryanair: How Low Can Low Cost Go?

For a while already, the airline industry is suffering. This hits not only the traditional full service airlines, but also the low-cost carriers that challenge them. This has led to various profitably warnings, bankruptcies and industry-wide drops of share price over the last years. As Europe’s most dominant low-cost carriers, also easyJet and Ryanair suffer. Fuel…

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Why Is Primark So Successful? The Power Of Alignment

Last week, on January 17 2019, Primark announced its Q1 results to January 5. As these results show, the company is doing well. Their sales grew 4 percent compared to last year and both their market share and operating profit margins increased. These are not isolated quarterly results. Of course, like other retailers, last year’s unseasonal weather and exchange…

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Strategy In An Uncertain World

In a world that is characterized by volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity (VUCA), we can question whether the idea of strategy as we have known it for long is still valid. After all, under such challenging conditions, it is far from obvious that long-term plans, objectives and systematic analysis still serve their purpose. And if…

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Strategy In A Volatile World

Traditionally, strategy is about making long-term plans and identifying the actions and resources that are needed for realizing those plans. Such a straightforward definition of strategy might have worked for a long time, but it doesn’t really work anymore in today’s volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA) world. After all, how can you make reliable long-term plans…

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The Six Functions Of Strategy

It is quite popular to question the role of strategy in today’s volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA) world. Strategy under such challenging conditions is pointless, so the argument goes, because things change so fast and are so uncertain that any strategy is outdated as soon as it is formulated. And the world is too complex and ambiguous to…

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What Does VUCA Really Mean?

Throughout the past decades we find numerous terms in the popular business press and academic literature that refer to an increasing inability to grasp the world and deal with the things happening around us. Examples include uncertainty, turbulence, rapid change, dynamism, disruption, complexity, hyper-competition, high-velocity markets and flux. For a couple of years, the notion of…

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