No strategic concept is relevant to all industries. In every industry there are certain concepts that are essential to crafting strategy. the following is an (incomplete) list of which concepts are important in which industry: Commodity e.g. iron ore, bulk chemicals, container shipping, steel Supply and demand industry cost curve Cycle (capacity) management Yield management

Companies often use their crown jewels to protect less efficient aspects of their business, instead of maximising their value as a stand-alone businesses. All companies do some aspects of their value chain better than others.  The strong “crown jewels” are the real source of profit, although conventional management accounts tend not show this by subsidising […]

 There is continual pressure to compromise your strategy with incremental decisions that individually are fine but cumulatively lead you down the wrong path. Mechanisms and policies can fight this “slow fade” in the medium term, and sharing the fundamental insights can keep the company on track in the long term. When couples separate, there is […]

Managing strategic risk requires the opposite approach to managing financial risk. The techniques to manage financial risk have become familiar to anyone who does their own personal finance or read the FT. Invest in a portfolio of unrelated assets, maintain liquidity, make multiple bets, limit your exposure to any one position or variable. The concepts […]

Values are only authentic if they are not means to an end, but they are the end in themselves. Most corporations have a set of values, but many interpret them as a means to an end. The end is usually improving the bottom line, whether through branding, employee motivation, retention or organisational alignment. The difficulty […]

Whether your company believes it is fully responsible for its own future or is at the mercy of external forces, neither belief is “true”. However, if you believe you create your own future you have a powerful basis for taking action, under any circumstances. When you read the company statements that accompany their results, it […]

Due to the Yin and Yang nature of strategy and execution, it is much more likely that they both fail or both succeed, than only one of them is flawed Turnaround CEOs and Equity Analysts are fond of declaring “the company’s strategy is right, but was executed poorly. We just need to focus on execution […]