I wanted to write about the significance of strategy and why I believe many people are alienated by this word. To make sure that my hypothesis was legit, I googled the topic. To no avail, there were many blog posts about why we shouldn’t fear the word strategy. So, here we go; I would like to add my two cents to the discussion.
Indeed, I have often encountered situations during my consultancy projects where the word strategy was dismissed for the sake of a more action-oriented language. And frequently, when I inquired about the strategy aspect of whatever we were discussing, I got answers not strategic at all. Admittedly devising robust strategies can be complex, but I doubt that this complexity leads to ignoring this vital topic. Instead, I believe it is mainly about the pressure in the organizations to show a bias for action. As a result, the why question appears less frequently than the what and how questions. Naturally, this leads to the atrophying of the strategy muscles of the marketing troops.
To create a robust marketing plan, the why questions must be answered first before moving to what and how. The depth of thinking lies in the proper answer to why. And the answers to why lead us to strategies.
So, no marketing or innovation effort is on point without properly articulated answers to all kinds of why´s. So, try to answer why questions first; you will see that whatever you are trying to create will become stronger. And if you find out that you are having difficulties coming up with a meaningful answer, that would mean that some more homework is required. Knowing what we don´t know is a blessing, not a curse.