Most leaders don’t know what a strategy is… do you?

In my role as a performance coach and a motivational speaker, I am lucky to get to work with a lots of different individuals and companies.

Many talk to me about their strategies… Most… unfortunately don’t actually have a strategy… or even know what one is.

In my experience, I think that the term “strategy” is used in most businesses just to make things sound more important, rather than being genuine strategic measures – instead of a ‘project meeting’ we will have a ‘strategic project meeting’… sounds much more sophisticated and business like!

Most leaders tend to have a clear goal or vision, but instead of a strategy, they end up just listing off a bunch of actions to achieve the goal… A bunch of actions does NOT make a strategy.

As Alistair Campbell states in his book ‘Winners’ – For any vision to work long-term, it is essential to have a strategy. In very simple terms a strategy is the ‘how’ an individual or business will approach achieving the vision. When the approach is clear, it enables everyone to stay on track when stuck in the detail. It creates consistency and adds weight and focus the the actions taken to achieve the goal.

So what is a strategy?


Vision – This is the main goal of the company/individual – This will be often value led… the “WHY” we do what we do.

Strategy – This is “HOW” we approach the goal – What will be the thread that binds all of the actions/tactics together, to ensure everything is focused on achieving the goal.

Tactics – “WHAT” actions will have to take place to achieve the strategy/goal.

For example, my life strategy is as follows:

Vision: To create environments where those around me can reach their potential.

Strategy: Focus on ‘being the best version of you’ – specifically within leadership and living a higher quality of life, by developing effective learning environments/programs.

Tactics: Write leadership books, develop on-line training programs, one-to-one online coaching and develop key note speeches.

Although it’s a simplified version… hopefully it is clear that my strategy will ensure that all my actions are intrinsically linked together, which will in turn allow me to achieve my vision in a consistent and structured manner.

What is your personal/business strategy?

Take some time today, to challenge yourself on this – Do you have a strategy? Or is it just a list of actions?

A great strategy will rapidly improve your chances of success.


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