Monday, May 29, 2017

Recognizing Strategy Terminology

Seeing that my background is in information systems and programming, I was excited to learn about a topic that I have not been exposed to before. I was glad however, when I started to recognize some of the terminology discussed in this week’s reading, when I reflected on my years spent in the technology consulting domain. While attending those quarterly meetings that reviewed company performance and future direction, I remember hearing words like BHAG and core competency, both seen in “Building Your Company’s Vision” by Collins and Porras. We were held to five core competencies, ranging from customer experience to thought leadership and quality in execution.
Working in the technology services industry seems to fall under the shaping category of strategic styles. The market of potential and existing clientele, while expansive, is highly competitive and unpredictable. As evidenced by Porras and Collins, “shapers” are constantly striving for customer growth in new opportunities, as well as excellence in quality of delivery to retain existing accounts.  I think the challenge with that is knowing what value a consulting company represents to its employee base, and its management board. I can see how the core ideology and envisioned future that Porras and Collins present can elude most consulting practitioners. How can one company continue to adapt to the aggressive demands and competition on human capital? Not to mention the subjective nature of a lucrative opportunity, and the constant change of required skillsets.
After consuming the assigned readings this week, I am now more curious about trying to better understand a company’s strategy and business model. I am particularly interested in the convergence of data analytics and strategic decisions in the making industries successful. I briefly looked at how the retail mogul Amazon became a hugely successful business, and a market differentiator with such complex and diverse set of service products. I took a few highlights from an article by MSG, that bring up consumer convenience with the “one-click” purchasing model, as well as speed of delivery with 2-day shipping. Both are solid key offerings that Amazon championed [1].
I think I can derive a few salient core values that Amazon intended in their business. One is customer focus and fixation on their experience. Another is perhaps their BHAG, which was to transform from a specialty e-commerce outfit into a cost-cutting leader with a huge catalog. They did so by forming partnership with quality goods manufacturers and sustaining an affordable shipping and delivery model.


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