Every profession has its own language. When medical doctors speak of Acute, Chronic and Malignant cases they have a specific meaning that is clear to them all. The power of this common language comes from its ability to rapidly communicate situations and enable collaboration on solutions between doctors of different cultures and specialities (holding conversations without lay-people understanding is just a side-benefit!)
This ability to clearly communicate and collaborate is also critical to creating an effective executive team. However, compared to doctors, executives lack the benefit of common training to forge this language. When terms like Value Proposition, Business Model, Core Competence or Strategic Initiative are thrown around, they are likely to mean different things to everyone. When you say “Our Target Customer”, is the same picture conjured up in everyone else’s head?
The academic definition of the terms isn’t important. What matters is that when your Executive Team uses them, you all understand each other. Given the varied backgrounds of most executive teams, the only way to achieve this is to go through a strategic process together when they are discussed.
Does your executive team speak a common strategic language?