Editor’s Note: The seventh-annual Learning Leadership Summit on July 18, will feature bestselling author and speaker Nick Tasler presenting Think Strategically & Act Decisively. Nick has kindly agreed to get the conversation started with a few pre-Summit blog entries about his new work.
My new book Why Quitters Win is based on what I call “strategic behavior.” Strategic behavior is a habitual pattern of thinking strategically and acting decisively. So why did it feel the need to write a whole book about this concept? There are two reasons:
1) Flatter decision making. Today’s managers at every level of an organization from storefronts to C-suits are increasingly expected to make strategic decisions. To become more agile, most organizations have reduced or completely eliminated cumbersome bureaucracies and centralization of decision authority. Due to the sheer volume of middle managers now making strategic decisions on the front lines, their impact on strategy is increasingly disproportionate to the impact made by strategic planners at the top of the corporate perch.
2) Shorter decision shelf life. The period of relevance for any one decision is significantly shorter today than it used to be. According to Google CEO Eric Schmidt, every 48 hours the world generates as much information as it did between the dawn of humanity and 2003. For managers, each piece of new information could signal a very important shift in the marketplace and/or competitive landscape. Adapting to those daily changes requires managers at all levels to make strategically critical decisions far more frequently than ever before. Today, corporate strategies are not just executed but shaped on the fly by many different managers at many different levels.
These trends presents lots of new risks, but also lots of opportunities. With my book, I hope to start a conversation about a new behavioral solution for maximizing the opportunities while minimizing the risks.