How to Think Strategically Strategy - Your Roadmap to Innovation and Results

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2013-12-05
  • Publisher: FT Press
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Discover how to become an effective strategic thinker


Some people seem to achieve the best results, again and again. Is it luck? Or is it strategy?


 How to Think Strategically equips you with the skills you need to make the best decisions and develop a powerful strategic mindset.


This hands-on guide tackles both the thinking and the doing, helping you develop a robust strategic plan. It offers a six-step framework that addresses key questions, including:


  • Which core challenges do I need to overcome?
  • How do I manage uncertainty and risk?
  • How do I execute my business strategy?


Visit www.howtothinkstrategically.org for the accompanying app and the ‘Strategic Thinking Manifesto’.

Author Biography

Davide Sola is professor of Strategy and Management at ESCP Europe and visiting faculty at Business School in Finland, India and Italy. He is also a Principal at 3H Partners, who work with multinational organisations and governments in Europe, US and Africa.

Jerome Couturier is an associate professor of strategy and management at ESCP Europe. He is the author of several articles, policy papers, book chapters, case studies and papers presented at international management conferences. He is also co-founder and president of 3H Partners


Table of Contents




Chapter 1 – What is Strategy?

What strategy is - and what it isn’t.

The Key Elements of Strategy

Identifying the Core challenges

Coordinated, creative and sustainable actions

Creating value


Chapter 2 – What is Strategic Thinking?

What is thinking?

What is strategic thinking?

What does it take to think strategically?

The Strategic Mind.

The strategic thinking process.


Chapter 3 - Turning Strategic Thinking into Strategy

The Link Between Learning And Strategic Thinking

How to Maximise Strategic Learning


Chapter 4 – What is Business Strategy?

The importance of Competitive advantage

How do you create Competitive Advantage?

The right ingredients: the sources of competitive advantage

A recipe: the value creating options



Chapter 5 –  Managing the Invisible Hand

What is the invisible hand?

Where does it come from?

How does it become visible?

How can you manage it?


Chapter 6 – Assessing the current situation

Are you in the right place?

Macro Environment Factors

Industry-related Factors

Do you have a competitive Advantage?

Where does superior value creation come from?

Value proposition

Key activities

Resources and competences

Value Network

Organisational culture


Chapter 7 – Identifying the core challenges.

How to identify challenges

How to validate challenges

How to select core challenges - the importance of trade-offs

Defining what success will look like – Strategic Objectives and strategic Guidelines


Chapter 8 – Solving the core challenges

Reducing the complexity of the core challenge

Identifying the key constituents of the core challenge

Understanding the importance of its constituents

Developing potential solutions

Lateral thinking

Solution shop approach

Co-creation workshops

Practical tools for generating solutions

The Blue Ocean Strategy

The 7 degrees of freedom

Selecting the best potential solutions

Timing the initiatives


Chapter 9 -Reducing uncertainty

Experimenting to reduce uncertainty

Phase 1:  Stating the underlying assumptions

Phase 2:  Testing assumptions about Value

Phase 3:  Testing assumptions about growth

Phase 4:  Testing assumptions about sustainability

Ongoing testing and learning


Chapter 10 – Managing Execution

A will to act.

A coordinated approach.

Setting the scene.

Launching and spreading change.

Creating a compelling story.

Using Role Models.

Accelerating the speed of change.

Consolidating change.


Glossary: Key concepts and definitions


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