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Strategic analysis

Defining the business strategy for any business calls for a deep understanding of the company and its markets, a clear, ambitious vision of the future and a hard-headed assessment of what can realistically be achieved. 


The ExecKIT® Strategic Analysis Methodology provides a proven, research and workshop-driven methodology that helps you to perform this exacting task rigorously, but is also savvy to "real life" constraints (for example, "I need a plan by Friday!"). 


The methodology starts by defining the scope of your business planning, the constraints and the process you will use, and then looks at your stakeholders, markets and the competition. When a clear picture has been drawn of the competitive landscape, the company must evaluate its strategic options and choose where it wants to be; the position in the market it wants to occupy. This forms the basis of the company's vision which defines what future success will look like. 


The ExecKIT® Strategic Analysis Methodology ensures the necessary analysis is done to create a powerful and motivating vision which provides a strong foundation for strategic business planning - the next step in the process. 


The business planning framework 


Every business must ensure it creates the best possible business plan and that it is kept up-to-date. A well defined planning framework provides a sound foundation for business planning, avoiding hours of debate about scope and definitions. The framework will include

  • Clearly defined business planning terms

  • A well defined strategic and tactical scope for the business planning process

  • A definition of the contents of the resulting business plan, including

    • the analysis to be performed

    • the required statements about goals, missions and challenges

    • the required financial plans and business models

    • the nature of the measures of success

    • the process for the apportionment of roles and responsibilities

    • how progress against the plan will be monitored

    • how the plan will be maintained

 

This ExecKIT® module enables you to set up a business planning framework that will enable you efficiently to create an appropriate, effective and enduring business plan. 

Stakeholder analysis

  • Do you want to understand who your stakeholders are?

  • Do you want to be sure you maximise the help you get from your supporters and minimise the damage your detractors can do?

  • Are you sure you resolve conflicting interests in the best possible way?

 

Every organisation has stakeholders who have an interest in its success or failure. Some stakeholders have a simple and direct interest. Owners, the directors, the management and the employees will usually benefit directly from a company's success. Competitors may want to see you fail. 


Others may have an interest too. Customers, business partners, regulatory authorities, suppliers, politicians and the general public can all contribute to the success or failure of a company. 


Understanding and proactively managing stakeholders is the first thing a business planner should think about and this ExecKIT® module enables you to analyse your stakeholders and create a plan to manage them. 

 

Markets analysis

  • Do you want to sell into the most attractive markets?

  • Are you concerned that your established markets are changing?

  • Would you like to enter new markets?

  • Are you looking for new market opportunities?

No matter how good your people, if your offerings are uncompetitive or your markets are declining, life will be tough. By contrast, companies which compete in growing markets are virtually assured of success. To make the right strategic business planning decisions, you must first have excellent information about markets in which you can compete, and then you must analyse and understand what that information means for you.

 
This crucial area of business planning is seldom given sufficient attention by management teams to ensure their own success. This ExecKIT® module ensures the senior team give detailed consideration to the best markets in which to compete. 

Competitive analysis

 

  • Do you want to know when you stand out from the competition and where you are outmatched?

  • Do you need to develop and sustain your competitive edge?

  • Do you want to make sure every battle you fight is loaded in your favour?

 

If there is a market demand for something your company supplies, only the competition stands between you and untold riches. In competitive markets, a company must have a clear idea of its own special value-add and ensure those differences are exploited and well understood by the customer. 


Can you be the Goliath in your market, overwhelming your competitors with brute strength and the best price? Or will you set out to be the very best, charging "top dollar" but providing great value for the discerning customer? Or will you find a market niche to dominate with specialisations a less focused supplier can never match? 


Good information and clear, tough decisions about how you compete creates the seeds for effortless victories rather than continuous struggles. This ExecKIT® module provides an analytical methodology to help ensure you only pick fights you will win. 

Strategic options

  • Do you want to be certain you are heading in the right direction?

  • Do you need to know you have considered every option available?

  • Do you want to be sure the business strategy you have chosen is the best?

 

Whether you are planning on behalf of a strategic business unit, a company, or a group of companies, you need to think carefully about your strategic options. It doesn't matter how well you execute your operations, your success depends above all on selecting the right business model in a market where you can create and sustain a profitable competitive advantage. As any investor will tell you, "what you do" is far more important than "how you do it". 


Should you focus entirely on your product business? Should you form a strategic alliance? Should you run the business for cash and spin off a smaller, dynamic company? Should you rationalise your portfolio? Should you move into a new market? Should you change your business model? 


This ExecKIT® module ensures you carefully evaluate your strategic options by bringing together the analysis of stakeholders, markets and competition and thinking broadly and realistically about the many options before deciding the right one for you. 

Creating the vision

  • Do you want to set a clear vision and direction for your company?

  • Do you want to translate your vision into action?

  • Do you want your team to act with purpose to implement your vision?

 

Once your best strategic option is decided, you will need to develop an exciting, motivating vision that clearly communicates where you want to be. You must describe your direction and what success will be like in ways that everyone can understand. You will need to define goals, measures and milestones (for people who like tangible measures) and paint a colourful picture of success for those who are motivated by inspirational ideas. 


This ExecKIT® module helps you to create a well expressed vision that provides the basis for strong and consistent leadership, as well as providing the top-level definition of what the business plan will achieve.

Critical success factors can be identified by analysing and careful planning
Preparatory work is essential
The Right Plan for the Job
Not all stakeholders are management or employees
You need to gather the right data in order to understand your market
Your research should be pragmatic and purposeful
Earlier analysis will help to define strategy