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7 Key Stages to Strategic Response


7 Key Stages to Strategic Response

Belden Menkus shares an article on strategic response speed and why it is important to measure.

Strategic response speed isn’t something most organisations measure, but it is rapidly becoming one of the most important dimensions of organisational effectiveness and performance.

Strategic response speed is how fast your business can respond to external change – first detecting it, then adapting and changing accordingly. It’s a new idea.  Of course, businesses have been developing strategies, and implementing them, for years.  And, managers have been complaining for almost as long about how long it takes to implement change. But seen as an overall organisational response to new threats and opportunities, which needs to be thought of and managed as a whole, it’s a new idea. And, like most new ideas, it needs to be understood before it can be managed.  So, here’s a quick introduction to the idea. 

Strategic response requires mobilisation across most, if not all, of the business model.

That may seem obvious, but it’s a point worth making, as it brings into focus the range of things that might need to change – some of which aren’t obvious.  As one example, for many businesses, their enabling activities and infrastructure (Finance, HR, physical space, IT, etc.) are barriers to making change happen quickly and often need major rebuilding to support what could seem like fairly minor strategic shifts: witness the struggle of so many organisations to bring in new “digital” skills and talent when their pay and reward arrangements (as well as performance management processes) are better suited for the world of 10 or 15 years ago. 

There are 7 key stages to strategic response, that map roughly to parts of this business model.

7 stages of strategic change:

    Sense – Detecting opportunities / threats that require a response.

    Decide – Evaluating available information and deciding upon a course of action (or none at all).

    Develop – Developing the form and manner of response – e.g. new customer offerings, new organisation structure, new processes.

    Procure – Obtain resources required to carry out a response – which may require changes in existing supply arrangements and / or the creation of new supply chains.

    Enable – Putting in place the supporting activities and infrastructure to allow changes to be made. This could include new HR processes, different finance and transaction processing systems, etc.

  Implement – Putting new processes, etc. in place.  

    Deliver – Responding externally and interacting with customers.

Read the full article, Strategic Response Speed – the essential survival metric, on