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Strategic … what does it mean?

Strategic is word that  sounds important and consequently it is used in many different ways. Unfortunately,  there are very few people that agree on its meaning, thus the true value of the word is often lost.

I will begin to build a definition using the  one that Erika Andersen used in the book Being Strategic.  It is as follows:

  • Being Strategic – involves a way of thinking and a set of skills that are applicable to almost any decision, large or small, professional or personal.
  • In 2000, a research group at the University of California, Berkely, estimated that amount of new information produced that year at 250 megabytes for every man, woman and child on the planet.  A megabyte is roughly the amount of data in a five hundred page book. Think about that” 6 billion people times 250 thick books’ worth of new information, each and every year.

That was over 10 years ago; I’m sure that the number is far greater today.

As business owners we are mostly focused on our own product/service and how to produce it and how to best market it.We have a vague notion of how that is supposed to be accomplished and we work within the confines of our own “box” in the implementation.

I define a strategic plan as:

  • One that encompasses values, history, internal and external factors, objectives, goals, strengths and weaknesses, asset allocation, trends and opportunities.
  • One that is dynamic, continual, flexible, creative, action oriented, and focused.
  • One that is developed by a business owner ( or management group) with the help of an experienced  coach
  • One that is accepted with an open mind and that works towards the achievement of a defined goal.

The creation of a strategic plan involves commitment to the process and accountability to its implementation. The past 25 years of  developing and improving our strategic plan process has taught  me that this one of the most important keys to the success of a business and that it is virtually impossible to self develop and implement without a professional facilitator/coach.

Accountability ties the bow around the Strategic Focus Process and it allows the defined goals to become reachable.

If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.

Henry David Thoreau

Nick Petra
Certified Financial Planner
Business Coach and Mentor


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