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Busting strategy myths

Strategic communication is a powerful growth engine for any business that has big ambitions. The fact that so much have been written about the successes of great companies led by strategic visionaries, begs the question why so many leaders still misunderstand strategy. 

A few myths exists surrounding strategy writing, strategic planning and thinking that deters companies from using a strategy to its full benefit. 




The more you plan, the better your results.

The length of time spent formulating a strategic plan does not predict the likelihood of successful implementation. Often, the longer organisations spend in planning, the worse their results are because they get stuck in the planning loop and are unable to move on to effective implementation.

Strategic planning is a painful and difficult process.

It doesn't have to be. In DevCom’s experience, the right planning group using the DevCom Way leads to enthusiastic commitment to a solid strategy.  

A perfect plan delivers perfect results.

The "search for a perfect plan" often leads to excessive planning time and reluctance to modify the plan as conditions change.

A great strategic plan depends on a thorough market analysis.

A solid understanding of internal and external environments has to be the starting point, but you can only test your strategy by putting it into action.

“We don’t need a strategic plan! Everything changes too quickly anyway.”

Every organisation needs some form of plan to guide its actions and efforts. It’s too easy to drift off course when business owners are faced with the chaos of daily operations.

“Our strategic plan is in a binder on my shelf – where it needs to be.”

Having a written strategic plan is critical, but its value is only realised when it is communicated and made available to all team members. How can you expect everyone to work toward your mission, vision, values and goals if they can’t make it their own?  Keeping the plan a secret internally will keep it from becoming a competitive advantage for your organisation.

“Our strategic plan will automatically produce results.”

A strategic plan produces results when team members buy into and act upon its details. To execute the plan, team members need to understand how they are supposed to go about their own activities. To produce results, the CEO and executive team have to review the plan frequently and systematically.  

We have an implicit strategy.

Strategy should not be implicit. A well communicated, explicit strategy gives direction and anchors internal functions, such as marketing, HR and finance. Ultimately, it results in customers who can clearly distinguish between competing offers.    

Strategic thinking is only about thinking.

Strategic leadership is not a math problem or a thought experiment. Ultimately, strategic thoughts must yield strategic action.


By busting these myths we hope businesses realise that strategy formulation is not a daunting chore. Done right, it enables a company to achieve its goals.