In increasingly turbulent and complex times, we understandably fall prey to a dangerous temptation – both as institutions and individuals. We’re tempted to abandon long-term strategy and fall back on rapid adaptation as the only winning game – sense and respond quickly enough to events as they occur and everything will be OK.
Don’t get me wrong, we all need to find ways to be more adaptable. But adaptation as a strategy is fraught with risk.While compelling in theory (who could be against adaptation?),adaptation in practice leads us to spread our resources way too thinly as we fall into a reactive mode, unable to prioritize or focus as we get bombarded with events occurring at a faster and faster rate. It leads us into a narrow incrementalism that often ends up at a dead-end.
So, what’s the option? The option is to focus more than ever on three core strategy questions that can help provide us with focus and stability even as the turbulence increases around us– and help us to prioritize where we need to respond and where we don’t.
What’s my differentiation?