In today’s highly competitive market, the continuous changes that are occurring in the social, politic and economic environment create serious challenges in the corporate world. Corporations cannot afford to do business as usual if they want to remain in the game and be successful. In order to achieve their goals and objectives, they need to evolve, adapt, learn and apply different new strategies that will help them secure long-run success and performance. Among those strategies, we are going to discuss ten of them and their advantages in connection with corporation’s goals and objectives.
1. Environmental Scanning
It is the first basic element in strategic planning. It is a process of cautious monitoring of external and internal factors that can affect the future and survival of a firm. It is done through the SWOT analysis where data are gathered, evaluated and analyzed by specific people in the organization. This strategy gives a lot of advantages such as helping the company to assess its outside environment for scientific, social, technical, political and economic changes that can affect its position in the world. It forces management to perform a self-analysis to establish areas of strength and areas that need improvement within the corporation in order to guaranty performance and success. It also helps with forecasting new strategies and promoting new position and vision of the company for the future. In order words, this approach helps corporation gain competitive advantages.
2. Strategy Formulation
After defining the corporation’s internal strengths and weaknesses, external opportunities and threats, the next step is to develop a broad plan to help the organization efficiently reach its goals while monitoring the environment with strategy formulation. It this process the company will determine its mission, vision, objectives, strategies and policies. This strategy helps the organization to determine and understand their purpose, their reason of being, their goals, what they want to achieve, how they will achieve their goals and objectives and finally it gives specific guidelines that help with implementation. It allows everyone from top to bottom to have a clear understanding of the company’s objectives and what is expected from them, it also reduces the risk of confusion, waste of time, money and energy among the three levels of management.
It is the execution of strategies and policies through programs, budgets and procedures to reach its goals. In this process plans are assigned, costs are allocated to tasks for better measurement of return on investment. The firm’s resources are used and a detailed system is given on how to perform specific jobs. This strategy turns strategies into concrete results and helps implement changes that are documented for future references. It also provides good measurements of projects with a time frame. It gives employees a clear step by step on how to perform their day-to-day tasks that will improve overall efficiency and sets the tone for quality work in all levels of management.
4. Evaluation and Control
In this process, the activities performed are evaluated to determine if the corporation’s goals are being achieved by the strategies that are chosen. If the results are not satisfactory compared to pre-defined standards, management must take correctives actions to adjust the issues. This strategy stimulates the ongoing process of improving performances within the corporation. Since the environment is constantly changing, it is imperative for management to be proactive by constantly reassessing its strategies in order to stay competitive.
5. Initiation of Strategy: Triggering events
When an organization becomes too comfortable with its actual strategy, it tends to become contented and not willing to make changes. This situation creates serious setback. It only means that the corporation is not growing and might be left behind in the competition. The triggering event is something that provokes a change in strategy. It motivates management to reexamine the firm’s position and bring new ideas, new strategies on the table. It helps the corporation to stay alert and informed about new changes in the environment and act accordingly to keep its competitive advantages.
6. Strategic Audit
It is the process of analyzing the different function and activities of a corporation to find out its strengths and weaknesses by using a checklist of questions in all areas. This tactic helps identifying specific areas that create challenges and also provide solutions to problems. It also brings fresh perspectives to the company.
7. Organizational Learning Theory
It is an organization that instead of imitating competitors or reshaping their environment is willing to use information that is available and using it to be more suitable to its environment. It assertively involves people from all levels of management to have their input into strategic planning. This strategy helps the corporation to act vigilantly in order to adjust and evolve in their challenging environment.
It is a corporation’s aptitude to respond to changes in the environment by moving from one strategy to another in order to adapt. This strategy sustains the corporation’s competitive advantage in the industry. It also requires that the corporation to become a learning organization that is dynamic and ready to acquire knowledge and use it to its advantage. It also teaches the firms how to solve problems systematically and make them expert in their field of action.
Companies are doing business all over the globe and serve different markets regardless of countries borders. It has affected the way business is done today. This strategy is important for companies that want to stay competitive. It gives opportunities for new markets and economic growth, and also open doors for a cultural learning experience that is an asset for any firm that wishes to become a learning organization.
10. Social Responsibilities of Strategic Decision makers
A corporation has not only economic, legal responsibilities but also responsibilities toward society. If those obligations which are both ethical and discretionary are not fulfilled it will affect the corporation in the long run. Ethical or discretionary duties of today can become laws of tomorrow. By abiding to them, corporations will positively affect their financial performance, give them competitive advantage and good reputation within the community they do business with.
Wheelen, T. L., & Hunger, J. D. (2012). Strategic management and business policy: Toward global sustainability (13th ed.). New York : Prentice Hall, pp. 3-86.