In business, the position of leadership conveys authority, logic, strength, and decisiveness. These skills are irrevocably linked with the day-to-day actions and choices of operational effectiveness.
It is easy to see why many leaders and managers concentrate on enhancing competitiveness by improving operational efficiency. They are gratified by more immediate results, and they find comfort in the routine, stability, and tradition of the familiar. They see strategy as too difficult, ambiguous, and complex to manage.
Successful leaders pursue their vision with as much zeal as they pursue operational efficiency. They realize that the benefits of strategic thinking can be just as rich and as tangible.
Strategic thinking is a powerful skill that benefits both organizations and individuals by
- allowing creative conception through thinking about the art of the possible
- speeding up decision-making and action
- enabling an organization to formulate a strategic path for success
- allowing individuals to envision their place in the business world
The essence of business strategy is the balance of operational and strategic thinking. Effective operational management is essential for the administration of organizations, no matter what their size or structure.
No business can survive without the practical planning and control of tasks and processes, and the specific distribution of resources. But in a world where a competitor’s innovative concepts and products can render a company obsolete before it even recognizes the threat, strategic skills are equally important for survival.
Initially, strategic thinking may be difficult for business leaders and managers who are used to thinking in a systematic and specific manner. But as they learn to think strategically, they develop the abstract skills that enable them to craft the future for themselves and their organizations.