I couldn’t have said it better myself

April 11, 2008 § 1 Comment

Just wanted to share two great quotes from a terrific article: “Can You Say What Your Strategy Is?” by David J. Collis and Michael G. Rukstad in this month’s Harvard Business Review. The first is the teaser for the article:

“It’s a dirty little secret: Most executives cannot articulate the objective, scope, and advantage of their business in a simple statement. If they can’t, neither can anyone else.”

Although the article is discussing strategy statements I think this speaks to the vital importance of brand positioning and the all-to-common void of clarity in this area from the corner office on down the line. The second quote points to the solution by affirming the power of well-chosen words to act as a catalyst for brand alignment:

“A 35-word statement can have a substantial impact on a company’s success…. Spending the time to develop the few words that truly capture your strategy and that will energize and empower your people will raise the long-term financial performance of your organization.”

Can You Say What Your Strategy Is? by Collis and Rukstad, Harvard Business Review, Vol.86 No.4, April 2008

I love it!


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§ One Response to I couldn’t have said it better myself

  • Jeff Garbers says:

    One of the hard things about articulating a strategy is having the courage to leave things out.

    Years ago I was involved in “crafting a mission statement”. The negotiation / collaboration process resulted in *everybody’s* ideas and needs being shoehorned into one long, over-general, contorted sentence. First, you really had to struggle to parse the thing, and second, it could have applied to nearly any technology company, failing to distinguish our unique value. It was full of things like “optimizing shareholder value through innovative, customer-focused solutions.” Yeah, right… but what does the company *do*? And, almost as important, what do you *not* do?

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