Archive for June 2011

How Do You Measure Your Strategy?

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How do you measure your business strategy?  I know, what a horribly cliche sounding question.  But seriously, how are you measuring what you do so you know what’s working and what’s broken?  I came across a brilliant idea to create clarity in your business strategy by reading a book about none other than Google.

In the plexIn the book “In The Plex. How Google thinks, works, and shapes our lives Steven Levy talks about how Google introduced the concept of outcomes and key results (OKR).  John Doerr, one of the early Venture Capitalists who was an investor in Google, nudged them towards adopting the concept after Andy Grove at Intel also adopted a similar strategy to create clarity in their business strategy.  The original idea of management by objectives came from a 1954 book written by Peter Drucker called ‘The Practice of Management’.

John Doerr later said; “Google not only adopted it, they embraced it.”

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A Practically Radical Strategy

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Practically radical bookI’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Practically Radical is one of the best books you’ll ever read on strategy.  I’ve tried to give you a snippet of what you will learn in this fascinating read.

Vuja De thinking – the best way to look at a problem

Deja vu is when you experience a situation that seems very familiar to a past experience.  Vuja De thinking is looking at a situation and analyzing it like you have never been in this circumstance before.  Looking a a problem with fresh eyes, logically understanding the problem, looking at other industry’s for similar situations and not letting past bias’s hinder your solution.

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The University of Regina iPhone App

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Iusask appI don’t think most companies and organizations in Saskatchewan need an app.  We’re still pretty far behind the technology curve.  So if you think developing an app as your next strategic move, I’d look into it a little deeper.  One organization that does have an app is the U of S, so obviously we need to ask the question; why doesn’t the University of Regina have one?

Before you go developing god knows what kind of app for your company make sure you ask the difficult questions along the way.

Why do we need an app?  What incentive is there to downloading our app?  Will an app make it easier for people to _________(fill in the blank) at the University of Regina?  Is it just our website in a different format?  Who is responsible for updating it?  Is our app worth talking about?

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What You Learn at Conferences in Business School

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Though I love my Alma Mater I don’t think it was the robust academia that molded my mind, it was everything outside the classroom.  The people you meet, the events you put on through student groups and the conferences you attend.  Academics, grades and going to class are just the tip of the iceberg if you really want to learn.  It’s not a secret either, it’s actually very simple, get involved, do as much as you can, meet as many people as you can.  Take Mark Twain’s advice to heart:

“I never let school get in the way of my education.”

What Do You Talk About?

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“Small minds discuss people , average minds discuss events, great minds discuss ideas.”

-Anonymous

The next time you find yourself gossiping about people, remember this quote.

 

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What’s Your Blue Ocean?

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Blue Ocean Strategy the bookYou now know how to assemble your hedgehog strategy it’s time to understand how you’ll be competing in the marketplace, or in our case the ocean.

The book Blue Ocean Strategy is based on the concept of not trying to compete in the market place but defining your own market space.  The authors talk about business as defined as companies competing in the red ocean.  It’s cut throat, battle to increase market-share, beat your competition and you’ll have a successful business. 

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