Ideology can become a sources of Risk

11 Nov

Risks are not just about identifying events that, when triggered, could cause problems, even all the defects, and operational issues like none performance, shortage or scarcity of some resource, all the obvious things we were taught that create risk, yes still valid, but now there is more to consider when talking risk. The SWOT analysis is just not good enough; we require some sociological scanning…

The environmental scan is the second tool to use with RISK analysis; for today deeper and unseen aspects prevail, that also impact our risk factors and profile; it could start with any underlying philosophy being promoted, even our way of thinking could be contaminated, anything that rides the strategic train of thought with us, and then takes over at some point from rational and tips us towards the emotional, or abstract side of reasoning. Aha, so risk is not just measurable, tangible, foreseeable, and obvious, it’s also hidden in our metal make-up…and very much so.

Hence, risk identification should also include the people involved in our teams, profile them; for their bias, fears and then most important their ideology.  Yes, the very way we are trying to solve a problem, is directly linked to how we are positioned, toward our environment, how we understand it, operate in it, and control it, is strongly influence by our ideology, things we believe in. This aspect could become the actual risk, sometimes only later on, and even a threat to the entire scheme, greater that the initial problems we foresee now… itself.

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Not everything labelled “Grand Strategy” is just that – Grand or even Strategy…

4 Nov

By definition; Grand Strategy; refers to a complexity of power, residing in strategic elements, both prevalent and indispensable for achieving very large-scale objectives such as winning a War or changing the political course of a nation.

In truth, No business ever reaches such a scale of work flow on the strategic level implied here. The launch of a new product for instance, could not possibly qualify for this analysis as “grand strategy” however important they are to those directly involved with it, it is still nowhere near the scale and scope of a true grand strategy – like WAR for instance.

 

Still, daily the term Grand Strategy is used out of context.

 

Now in business; for an enterprise, the “Grand Strategy”  – to be termed one – should include a cradle to grave approach, with for instance; prior calculations, assumptions, and research (by experts) on the business assumptions made in relation to what will actually be required to achieve various and diverse objectives simultaneously, through the application of concurrent running strategies – with simultaneous employment of divergent strategies and tactics for instance. Even then, it’s still not that clear-cut, or qualifies as a Grand Strategy.

The rules are different; for business there are no such things as peace and war, no transition from politics to War to achieve their aims with. It’s all substituted; there is intensive competition and “civilised rivalry” – a battle fought on supply and demand estimates – every day, but there is no conflict in which someone dies, no, contrary the outcome is severely constrained by laws, treaties, and regulation – quite civilised.

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CAPS the way forward, when dealing with strategic complexity, through critical thinking…

22 Oct

Have you ever wondered why some people are better than others at solving certain (complex) problems and making good decisions? Thereby leading the pack?

The answer seems obvious: they know more than us, or they have the experience required, they have the better education, the gift of the gab, and my favourite – they are the appointed authority etc.

We seem to find a reason for every situation in life with smart people to stand back, we become inventive with excuses as to why they outperform us, and why we have to be submissive or why we have to adhere to them. It’s called conformity. Society has taught us to conform to the rules; of culture, religion, social beliefs, and structure. All good and well, don’t get me wrong, but they never taught us that our thoughts, our thinking and reason do not belong to the same rules.

Our minds are free agents, or should be. So how smart are you anyway? Some people are smarter than others for sure! But being smart isn’t enough, when we want to find truth, and seek clarity, rationality. The truth is this; we are all “smart” at one thing, but not all things.

People have been conditioned to think with one paradigm only, all their lives, they just stay true to one way of thinking, and they never stop to think about their own thoughts, or way of thinking, when they do this thing called thinking so well.

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The Biggest problem with corporate strategy is trying to predict the future and to “dictate the marketplace.”!!!

21 Oct

Almost all strategic planning sessions start off with the vision, mission, goals, values, and objectives scenario – yes? This begs the question, how good is our track record for predicting the future – I bet it’s pretty bad?

Maybe it’s time to become radical, and to totally change our strategic start up design perspective. If I tell you that there is a far better way to hit the bull, more often than not would you be interested?

Would you consider yet another reality; May I change that perspective, and let’s see if that is still all true.

(My theory is if we change our perspective and not just our perceptions, we will get a much better look at the real problem, and the way we look at things, then creates scenarios in the brain, that keeps changing with the new perspective).

Because if we only believe we can’t predict the future with much certainty then we won’t bother planning it in much detail, will we? Safe to say; No one can predict with up-most certainty anything that is in the future, let alone what will happen next week…

Nevertheless, forecasting is of the up-most importance in business.

Therefore, strategist, and forecaster alike need to probe beyond that curtain of uncertainty, and predict what the eventuality could/ would be like if we stay, start the course with our current strategy.

(The academics teach us to apply the laws of averages here, to find the average, and then to summarise risk, and come up with a worst case, average and best case scenario.)

Now days we see a change, away from that norm, towards looking at broad spectrum analyse of strategic challenges – by firstly looking at both internal (environment) as well as external (environment) and scanning it for defects, and misplaced links, between structure and strategy…, translating into emergent strategy; There are two approaches to strategy making – a deliberate or emergent strategy. The deliberate strategy is analytical and structured – Vision Statement, Mission Statements, Strengths and Weaknesses (SWOT), Objectives etc.

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Enhancing our “Predatory Traits” with CAPS!!!

21 Oct

Predators are focused on a – Revolutionary Radical Strategy – that is always well conceived, well planned, time-phased and engineered to be flexible, with true resilience and vigilance thus epitomising the symbol of the predator character. Where we act cool and calm, calculated in our aims, we are preserving our strength and not showing our weakness until the decisive moment. Designed and equipped for precision styled work. The predator waits his turn; he ambushes his pray and avoids conflict by doing so. Poised for that decisive moment, at which a calculated blow should be rendered, with precision; towards the “strategic target” of the body. Here he uses all his strength, power and tactics – to make the conclusion – final and the conflict brief. His strategy reduces any possibility of on-going confrontation, thus avoiding tension, as well as avoiding the possibility of injury to him-self or allows the objective to escape and evade.

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We are still not getting the basics of strategy right, are we?

14 Oct

We need to do this strategic, we have a strategy, and it’s our strategy… You hear about it all the time. Executives like to say “strategy” this “strategy“ that, we hear it a lot, then it sounds big, complicated and even important.

When in fact it is far from it…strategy is not always complicated

Strategy in itself – at the basic level – is very simple actually; it’s dealing with the details that can make it seem complicated.

We seem to get stuck in the details of the scheme mostly, and not really in strategy making itself.

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If you desire true innovation, then you should be familiar with the concept and what it really has to offer.

18 Sep

In strategic circles, the one with the most “innovative” thinking trumps any one’s brilliant plan.

We’ve all heard the saying “perception becomes reality,” now if that statement was true, what will it take to make all “innovation” become reality too, and if it is that easy, why aren’t we seeing a lot of innovation or inventive people around?

I hear a lot of talk, everyone is abuzz with innovation, “we have to be more innovative people”, oh and the classic – “think outside the box”, who started all this madness, event at schools teachers are teaching “innovation” and how to be “inventive”.

We hear the word “innovation” everywhere, it is spreading like wild fire, especially in our media and business press, suggesting the word is becoming “a cliché,” (or used out of context) and just implying some form of change, and is used more as a buzz word, a fashion statement, than to actually advance very specific ideas.

“Innovation” – has also become big business; it has created a new economy; franchises, schools, institutions even, and lots of  literature – over 250 books on Google books with innovation in the title; consultants are popping up all over, people even get appointed with the title as innovation consultants, officer, office, thus making millions of dollars, even in advising, it’s become businesses. Just like global warming it s creating jobs and a sub culture.   Yet, I still have to see something  that’s truly jaw dropping, one invention that will convince me it exist, that will convince me it has merit, or can be taught, or harnessed like energy and has place in business theory. Continue reading

What makes advice strategic and great?

2 Sep

What makes advice strategic and great?.

What makes advice strategic and great?

2 Sep

truthFirstly what is advice then?

The dictionary describes advice as being; an opinion or recommendation offered as a guide to action, conduct or way ahead. Therefore, strategic advice is an opinion, or a recommendation, that will give you an advantage over others, leverage, or a way to action what you intend to do.

It’s therefore not a Hot cliché – the likes of; “Inspire your team” and you will reap the benefits, “feedback is the breakfast of champions”, we have all heard these, always a winner, “great leadership advice”, but how do you pull that off anyway, if all of these clichés stem from attributes of strategy and not elements, if you have no report with a team yet, how can you inspire them? So is it still great advice or even advice at all? No!

No cliché is ever great or even good advice, or even advice for that matter, its sales talk and not great advice at all; great advice is something that takes us from cradle to grave. Giving good advice means turning the power of situational analysis on, creating insight, and understanding, and transferring that into straight, clear, actionable answers. Things that you can do in practice…

Now, if you think about it, most things in life then starts with us having to go/ or say “YES” to it, first, yes is somehow the prelude to any possible action. We normally seek advice on actionable items in our environment, or life, and business for that matter. That requires us to do, think and feel positive about it, so that we can say yes to it.

Yes, I will marry you – for instance is just a great example of how you have to commit, to an actionable decision, and start working towards making it work, and then making it a success, and them making it last – sustainable… that’s the whole process in a nut shell. So yes, and saying yes, requires us to seek advice.

This aspect of strategy – and almost everything we as living things do is part or becomes strategy that is driven by a desire to survive, prosper, and expand.  Early on in life I already realised that planning is the way to get what you want or need, and most of that did not come from books, or training, but trial and error, so too most of what I know about leadership didn’t come from having read (several) business books, any formal education, or things that I read up on or conferences or seminars  attended, or even leaders I have met, knew and worked with.

It came from self determination, a positive outlook, resilience, patience – is a virtue – its the learned ability to apply discipline to your thoughts when they become anxious over the outcome of a goal. Impatience breeds anxiety, fear, discouragement and failure and a mind-set that get one to go, and say yes, requires positive karma. (Karma is the total effect of a person’s actions – good and bad – and conduct – or lack thereof – during the successive phases of the person’s existence, that brings about good or bad things, emanating from energy, that goes where attention flows. So if you practice good, and concentrate on good – you will multiply same, and so to with bad.)

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Responsibilities of Emergency Co-ordinator and Safety Marshals at events.

1 Sep

The Emergency Co-ordinator is the overall co-ordinator of all safety marshals.

They are responsible for:

  1. Obtaining and posting emergency signage and drawing up of a floor plan and route evacuation map for the event.
  2. Overseeing the development, communication, implementation, and maintenance, and implementing of the overall Emergency evacuation plan (EEP).
  3. Ensuring the dissemination of the plan via announcement, of the plan to the spectators, as well as the procedures. Checking up on safety personnel, and notifying all personnel of changes to the plan, or infringements.
  4. Maintaining up to date lists of emergency contact numbers, critical operations personnel, and any other personnel with assigned duties under this plan. Lists must be supplied in Appendix to the plan, of responsible people and contacts.
  5. In the event of a fire or other emergency, relaying applicable information to emergency personnel,  the JOC and Public Safety officials.
  6. Establishing, demarcation and safeguarding of designated evacuation sites, and landing zones for helicopters, and emergency vehicles, for evacuees.

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