What Sets Breakthrough Strategies Apart
Composing valuable strategies requires seeing the world in new and unique ways. If everyone uses the same variables, information, and computational tools, the logical result is computational consistency, shared conclusions, and me-too strategies. Strategic thinking is fueled by the novelty of our observation, not its consistency: if your desire is to be a value creator, you must aspire to see what others cannot, rather than deriving the same conclusion.
Still, strategic thinking does not sit outside the realm of logic, science, and experimentation. Like scientists, strategic thinkers start with a significant problem to solve, and then use this problem as a prompt to compose a theory of value creation.
Valuable theories do tend to share some common features:
1. They are built around novel beliefs and often try to solve previously unrecognized problem.
2. They indicate clearly what problems to solve and experiments to run and make it easier to spot solutions others have overlooked.
3. They solve not one but a host of problems, and then continue to identify problems to solve.
Strategic leaders should focus their efforts on positing theories, testing their underlying logic and assumptions, and crafting strategic actions and experiments. It is those activities – rather than computation or the avoidance of biases and errors – that lead to true breakthroughs!
[Complete article, “What Sets Breakthrough Strategies Apart”, available at https://sloanreview.mit.edu/article/what-sets-breakthrough-strategies-apart/]
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