How Can You Create a Better Strategy for Your Business?

What are your objectives for your business? 

If you are like the hundreds of executives I’ve taught in Stanford and other executive seminars, your answer said, in some way or other, that you plan to outperform your competitors.

How, specifically, will you do that? You might be able to “out-execute” the competition for a while. However, when you do, the competition will copy your methods and steal your people. The only way I know that you can consistently out-perform your competition is to have a better strategy. You must create and hold a superior position.

On this web site, we will explore how to create a better strategy in easy-to-understand, bite-size chunks of 5-minute videos and 1-page pictures. The explanations are simple, practical, and useful. You can apply them immediately to your business. Please watch the short Video Introduction (above) and the series of videos on the 5 Fundamentals. Then sign up for the free video series that will teach you even more ways you can create a Better Strategy for your business!

Your Most Important Strategy Question

In the sidebar of this page, you will see a box in which you can share with me you most important, most challenging strategic question. I will use these questions to create content for future videos. Unless you specifically give me permission to do so, I will not identify you, your company or your industry when I answer your question—just in case the question is a sensitive one. Please take a minute and send me your toughest strategic challenge.

Five Fundamentals of Business

5 Fundamentals of Business 

Have you ever wondered what those terms we use all the time--terms like Business Strategy, Business Model, Corporate Strategy, Strategic Management, Strategic Planning, etc. really mean? The terms are used frequently but rarely understood.

There is good news. On this site you have an opportunity to learn how to think and act strategically. The explanations are simple, practical, and useful. Please watch this introduction to learn how these concepts fit together to help us get what we all want—better results!

What is a business

1. What is a Business? 

Of the five fundamentals of business, (1) business, (2) business model, (3) business strategy, (3) corporate strategy, and (4) implementation, the most basic is the business. What exactly is a business? (Hint: “Transportation” is NOT a business.)

Understanding what a business is and how the basic elements work together is the bedrock of all strategic thinking. In this video I use a simple one-page picture to describe exactly what a business is and how it works. You can use this picture to “map” your business.

What is a business model

2. What is a Business Model? 

Recently a tool call the Business Model Template has become popular, especially with startups. This is a simple one-page template that is certainly valuable for any business to fill out. Unfortunately, it has little to do with business models. What it really does is help to define the basic business, and a couple of key strategies.

The question of “What is Your Business Model?” must be answered from two perspectives; the customer and the investor. How do we deliver value to the customer and capture it for the shareholder? What is your business model?

What is a Business Strategy

3. What is a Business Strategy?

“Business Strategy” is the most over-used and least understood term in our business vocabularies. If you doubt that statement, just ask three of your colleagues to define a business strategy. Are their definitions something you can actually use to run a business?

In previous videos we learned what a business and a business model are. Now we can learn what a business strategy is and begin to understand our own strategies.

What is a Corporate Strategy4. What is a Corporate Strategy?

"Corporate strategy" and "business strategy" are two terms that are often used interchangeably. This is a big mistake because they are very different.

Corporate strategy is about how we choose which businesses to put in one corporation and how we will manage them in such a way that we increase the total value above what we could obtain if we kept the businesses separate. This is a big topic and we'll introduce the basic idea in this video—including the concept of “direct linkages.”

What is Implementation5. What is Implementation?

We will use three terms interchangeably--action, implementation, and execution--to denote what we do to convert our business and corporate strategies into actions that get results.

We know that managers spend most of their time taking action. That is because the tasks associated with implementation are complex processes that require nearly constant monitoring and adjustment. There is a very good reason that we separate implementation processes from the decisions we make to create a strategy. That reason is discussed in this video.

Free Videos

At the top of each page of this web site, you will see a tab labeled “Free Videos.” As I continue to build the video library, I will update you via email as each new video is released. To access these free videos, all you have to do is give me your email address. I don’t like spam and promise to guard your email address as if it were my own. Remember, to get access to the videos, you have to register your email address. If the technology works properly, you should only need to do this once.