Most people spend more time planning their summer vacation than planning their lives.
Generally speaking most people plan their lives one day at a time. Others may plan one week at a time. Rarely can you get people to think in large quantities of time. Bobb Biehl wrote once, “We tend to over-estimate what we can accomplish in twelve months and under-estimate what we can accomplish in five years. It has been said that most people do not lead their lives, they accept their lives and call it fate!
Strategic thinking helps me to plan, become more efficient, to maximize my strengths, and to look for different paths to achieving a desired objective. Consider these six reasons for adopting strategic thinking.
Strategic Thinking Simplifies the Difficult
Novelist Miguel de Cervantes wrote, “The man who is prepared has his battle half-fought.” Strategic thinking takes long-term objectives which can be difficult to address, and breaks them down into manageable sizes. Complexity becomes simplified with strategic thinking.
Strategic Thinking Prompts you To Ask The Right Question
Strategic thinking forces you through a process of deeper reflection. Bobb Biehl has suggested six areas to evaluate:
- DIRECTION – What should we do next? Why?
- ORGANIZATION – Who is responsible for what? Who is responsible for whom? So we have the right people in place?
- CASH – What is our projected income, expenses? Can we afford it? How can we afford it?
- TRACKING – Are we on target?
- OVERALL EVALUATION – Are we achieving the quality we expect and demand of ourselves?
- REFINEMENT – How can we be more effective and more efficient?
Strategic Thinking Prompts Customization
General Patton once stated that successful generals make plans to fit circumstances, but do not try to create circumstances to fit plans. Strategy is not a “One Size Fits All” proposition. Sloppy and generalized thinking is the enemy of achievement
Strategic Thinking Prepares You Today For an Uncertain Tomorrow
Strategic thinking is the bridge that links where you are to where you want to be. It has been said that strategic thinking is like saddling your dreams before you ride them.
Strategic Thinking Reduces The Margin of Error
Without this type of thinking it is like the person involved in shooting sports who shoots, aims, ready. Slightly off line becomes way off line as time moves us forward. The better the alignment, the better the results.
Strategic Thinking Gives You Influence with Others
One executive stated that our company has a short ranged plan and a long range plan. Our short range plan is to stay afloat long enough to make it to our long range plan. That is hardly a strategy!
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