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To leverage the famous words of Jack Welch, former CEO of General Electric, "Good business leaders create a vision, articulate the vision, passionately own the vision, and relentlessly drive it to completion." In essence, Strategic Management involves a proactive approach and systematic analysis of an organization's external and internal environment to define, communicate, and execute a strategic vision. One Strategy Development Example that embodies this fundamental principle is explored below.

The Screening Process

Before a strategy can be rolled out, a meticulous screening process helps execute successful Strategic Management. Organizations primarily focus on understanding their environment and the subtle influences that can impact performance. This process, known as Environmental Scanning, incorporates both external and internal analysis. On the exterior, it dives into understanding market trends, competitive landscape, regulatory environment, and socio-political implications. Internally, it scrutinizes the organization's structural fitness, cultural fabric, organizational capabilities, and resource availability.

Formulating the Strategy

Based on the Environmental Scanning, an organization can initiate Strategy Formulation. At this stage, the emphasis is on developing robust goals and objectives aligned to the overall organizational vision and mission. Strategies are then crafted around these goals with a strong alignment between Corporate Strategy, Business Strategy, and Functional Strategy. The Corporate Strategy defines the industries and markets in which the business operates. The Business Strategy outlines competitive positioning within the industry, and Functional Strategy focuses on different departmental strategies, be it HR, marketing, finance, or operations.

Strategy Evaluation, Formulation, and Choice

Once the initial blueprint is laid out, the strategy undergoes rigorous vetting in terms of viability, sustainability, and suitability for the organization's long-term objectives. This phase, known as Strategy Evaluation, involves choosing the strategy most aligned with the organizational values and goals. The idea is to seek maximum return with minimum risk. Here, Decision Trees, Scenario Planning, and Sensitivity Analysis are a few handy tools.

Strategic Implementation

Implementing the chosen strategy is a critical step in Strategy Development. Coined as Strategy Implementation, this phase includes a comprehensive plan outlining the strategic initiatives, timelines, responsibility matrix, and resource allocation. Quality Management, Performance Management, and Operational Excellence become key enablers in this phase. Measures are also put in place to handle resistance to change and to create a conducive ecosystem for successful strategy execution.

Strategy Monitoring and Control

Lastly, Strategy Monitoring and Control is fundamental to any Strategy Development process. This phase ensures all parts of the organization are moving in unison towards the organizational goals. Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and Balanced Scorecards are typically used for continuous monitoring.

Leadership and Culture in Strategy Development

An overarching key principle for any successful Strategy Development comes in the form of strong leadership and organizational culture. As Peter Drucker once quipped, "Culture eats strategy for breakfast." Organizational culture comes into play in galvanizing teams to take collective action towards the strategic goals. Stakeholder Engagement, Corporate Communication, Change Management, and Leadership Development are critical to fostering such an enabling culture.

Continual Learning and Adjustment

With a volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous business environment, Strategy Development cannot be a one-time process. To ensure sustainability and resilience in achieving the organization's vision, continual learning and adjustment must be in place. The organization should be structured to adapt and recalibrate its strategy based on predictions, experience, and feedback.

The principles of Digital Transformation, Corporate Social Responsibility, and Risk Management are also vitally integrated into the Strategy Development process for holistic and future-fit strategic management.

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