What is Strategic Management?

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What is Strategic Management?
Zedy Zaidy, Student (University), South Africa

In the business environment people talk of strategic planning, strategic implementation, strategic direction, strategic fit, strategic flexibility, dynamic environment, turnaround strategy, downsizing, divergence and convergence and manymore.
Economists, managers, exchangers, marketers, speculators, brokers and dealers, innovators and entrepreneurs, and broadcasting corporations all fuel us up of big words...
Now what exactly is this field of strategic management?

What Strategic Management is...
K.Narayana Moorthy, HR Consultant, India
Strategic management processes links and activates the following spheres of an enterprise towards effective performances: vision, mission and objectives; the general environment; the industry and international environment; enterprises' internal factors; general strategic and tactical alternatives; strategy variations; choosing appropriate strategy and tactics; resource and structure; policies-plans-procedures and administration and establishing an evaluation system.
Knotty problems arise in the field of strategic management of depletion of natural energy resources; relationship between political and business corporates; justice for the society in which business corporate exists; emerging and new forms of society. These are to be tackeled by adopting a method which satisfies all.

What is Strategic Management?
Belay Gezahegn, Director, Ethiopia
Let us take an example of a mountain climber who wanted his name recorded in history:
- This person has to design a strategy that will help him to succeed, without losing his life or succumb an injury. This may include selecting the easiest route to the top of the mountain, exercise to get his body fit to the task, obtaining tools, instruments, medicines, foods.
- Besides, he has to study the history of earlier mountain climbers and learn from their weaknesses and strengths, he has to be able to identify his own strengths and weaknesses, and he has to know risks like avalanche and the way to avoid them.
- In addition to the above, the climber has to have sufficient resources like finance, time and other things to get his strategy fulfilled.
- If he does not have adequate financial resources, he may not be able to pay for the needed tools.
- If he does not have enough time, he cannot exercise properly.
- If he does not have a strategic plan to get these resources his vision will remain a dream.
The same analogy applies to business firms.

Definition of the Field of Strategic Management
K.Narayana Moorthy, HR Consultant, India
A nice definition of strategic management is also : a field that deals with major intended and emergent initiatives taken by general managers on behalf of the owners, involving utilization of resources, to enhance the performance of the firm in its external environment.

What is Strategic Management
Nay Min Aye, Teacher, Myanmar
Strategic management is the management process which would keep the organization from deviating from it's desired performance and result in a changing environment.

A Definition of Strategic Management
Alan Kennedy, Canada
The definition I offer for strategic management in my book, The Alpha Strategies: Understanding Strategy, Risk, and Values in Any Organization, is: Strategic Management is managing the strategic thinking of individuals to produce superior organizational performance.
Managing strategy is achieved by managing the individuals responsible for strategy and its implementation. Those individuals are, of course, the employees of an organization. Each employee, from the CEO down, has a role to play in strategy and its implementation and therefore must be managed.
The most critical activity to be managed is managing the strategic thinking of those individuals; namely being the way they “think” about strategy. Managing how employees think about strategy is achieved by identifying, prioritizing, and communicating clear expectations for strategy implementation and making sure those expectations are met.
Everyone in the organization has a role to play in strategic management and driving better performance.

Strategic Management Defined
azeem, Student (MBA), Pakistan
SM can be defined as “the art and science of formulating, implementing and evaluating cross-functional decisions that enable an organization to achieve its objective.

What is Strategic Management
ismail Ahmed Al kamish, Project Manager, Sudan
Is the entire thinking of sustainability, innovation and responding to the challenges and threats facing an organization to provide satisfactory products and services.

Strategic Management is a Quest to Maximize Value
Beatrice Musiega, Accountant, Kenya
I would sum up strategic management as a quest to maximize the value of an enterprise by those charged with the responsibility of its management.

Strategic Management Comprises Strategic Planning and Strategic Implementation
Zedy Zaidy, Student (University), South Africa
Strategic Management is divided into two expert-fields, to wit:
- Strategic Planning
- Strategy Implementation and Control.
I will briefly start with the description of Strategic Planning:
STRATEGIC PLANNING: This is a systematic process of envisioning a desired future, and translating this vision into broadly defined goals and sequence of steps to achieve them.
In contrast to long-term planning, which begins with the status quo and lays down the path to meet estimated future needs, strategic planning begins with the desired-end and works backward to the status quo. At every step of long-term planning, the manager asks: What has to be done to reach the next step? At every step of strategic planning, the manager asks: What has to be done at the previous step to reach here?
In contrast to tactical planning, which focuses at achieving narrowly defined interim objectives with predetermined means, strategic planning looks at the holistic picture and is flexible in choice of its own means.

Strategic Management Components
K.Narayana Moorthy, HR Consultant, India
@Zedy Zaidy: In my view, Strategic Management consists of:
a. Strategic Planning: covering environmental assessment, organizational directions, strategy formulations and preparing implementation plans;
b. Strategy Implementation: covering- top management commitment, involving middle managers, effective communication, clear assignment of responsibilities, preventive measures against change barriers, team work activities, respect for all, calculating buffer line;
c. Operation Management: involving strategic planning-portfolio management and project management process- all leading to operational excellence;
d. Strategic Direction: involving- principles, investment policies, financial discipline and dividend policies
e. Strategic Fit: covering technology fit-operating fits-managerial fits-distribution & customer relations fits;
f. Strategic Flexibility: involving market orientation, market focus environmental turbulence and sustainable competitive advantages and service performance.

Strategic Management
K.Narayana Moorthy, HR Consultant, India
I add further comments on strategic management as dealing with:
1. Organizational Environment: covering new situations;looking into unpredictable obstacles (problems); creating safe & healthy work places; facilitating work/life balance;
2. Turnaround Strategies: covering convert, change or transform loss making into profit making again; caring industrial sickness;
3. Downsizing: involving corporate re-organization; creating a leaner company; reducing layers of organization;
4. Divergence: creating a skill based progressive system; advance in trading systems; planning risk coverage;
5. Convergence: involving specialization of product and services;partnering systems realignment & synchronization technology and leadership.

Strategic Management Center
Jaap de Jonge, Editor, Netherlands
We have now added a separate knowledge center on strategic management and moved this discussion over there. Have a look...


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