Embrace strategies for improving your business and reaching your organization's goals "I wholeheartedly agree with Patrick Stroh: Good leaders understand strategy and good strategists need to be good leaders. Make this book a strategic tool for improving your business strategy." — Harvey Mackay, author of the #1 New York Times bestsellerSwim With The Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive In today's fast-moving and competitive business environment, strong leadership, insightful strategy, and effective innovation are critical links to staying ahead of your competition. Getting your business house in order can often be complicated, but does it really have to be? How do you take MBA 101 lessons, great models, and exceptional concepts and put them into play in the real world? Business Strategy: Plan, Execute, Win! strives to answers these questions in an educational and entertaining format. Working as a Fortune 20 practitioner with C-level executives, author Patrick Stroh has a keen understanding of the role played by current day strategists. With 5 chapters following the format of "All I Ever Needed to Learn About Business Strategy I Learned..." At the Movies, On the Farm, On Shark Tank, On Hell's Kitchen, and From the Bible, readers will gain valuable strategic insight regardless of industry, business maturity, or current business turbulence and how to apply these insights based on the factors impacting their own business. Each chapter ends with a One Chapter Conclusion, Two Gold Nuggets the reader is to write down and Three Additional Resources/Tools for more information, offering a practical roadmap to simplifying your success.
Preface ix Acknowledgments xvii Part I: Level Setting/Foundation 1 Chapter 1: Evolution of Strategic Planning and Today’s Role: Chief Strategy Officer 5 Evolution of Strategic Planning 6 New Role: Chief Strategy Officer 14 Strategy Starts at the Top 14 Why Can’t This Role Simply Remain with the CEO/President? 15 Is Business Strategy Work a Full-Time Job? Isn’t Business Strategy Work a Once-a-Year Job? 16 What Type of Chief Strategy Officer Is Needed? 20 CSO: A Distributed Solution versus a Singular Role 29 Summary 30 Chapter 2: Emotional Intelligence: Being “Facilitative and Consultative” 33 Characterizations 37 Innovation and Linkage to Business Strategy 42 Summary 50 Part II: Parables that Teach and Portray Business Strategy 53 Chapter 3: Everything I Needed to Learn about Business Strategy I Learned . . . from Hell’s Kitchen and Kitchen Nightmares 55 Hell’s Kitchen 57 An Incredible Sous-Chef Makes a Big Difference 58 Know Your Sweet Spot 59 Running the Pass 60 Competing Restaurants 60 Perform Like a Champion 61 Kitchen Nightmares 62 Know Your Customers, and Listen to Them 63 I Am the God of Food 64 It’s Not My Fault, They Didn’t Tell Me! 64 Not Managing the Details 65 Are You Tasting Your Food? 66 Simplicity and Its Impact on Execution 67 Counting Coins in the Kitchen 68 Final Plating of This Chapter 69 Summary 71 Chapter 4: Everything I Needed to Learn about Business Strategy I Learned . . . at the Movies 73 21 Movies: Six Lessons on Business Strategy 74 Passion/Motivation 74 Imagination/Innovation 78 Planning 79 Values and Teamwork 81 Customer Experience 85 Knowing Your Market/Strategic Intel 86 The Final Scene 87 Summary 88 Chapter 5: Everything I Needed to Learn about Business Strategy I Learned . . . Growing Up on a Farm 91 Hard Work 92 Being the Boss 93 Planning and Executing 96 Technology 97 Milk Co-ops 98 Innovation 99 Outsourcing 101 Delegation 102 Sharpening the Saw 103 Summary 104 Chapter 6: Everything I Needed to Learn about Business Strategy I Learned . . . from the Bible 107 Five Themes of Business Parables from the Bible 109 Vision/Planning 110 Communications and Listening to Customers 112 Roles and Responsibilities 114 Seeking Counsel and Direction 117 Execution 119 Final Closing Point 122 Summary 123 Chapter 7: Everything I Needed to Learn about Business Strategy I Learned . . . from Shark Tank 125 Typical Questions the Sharks Ask All Presenters 126 Round 2: Shark Personalities 132 Summary 137 Part III: Tools, Resources, and Conclusions 139 Chapter 8: The Strategy Toolbox and Other References 141 13 Lucky Models and Methods 142 Personal Top 12 Most Valuable Business Books of All Time 153 One Final Tool 155 Chapter 9: Winning Checklist: How to Succeed in Business Strategy 157 Winning Conclusions and Summary 161 A Closing Song 166 About the Author 167 Index 169
PATRICK J. STROH is Principal at Mercury Business Advisors, a firm providing business management advisory services in areas such as Business Strategy, Operational Execution, Innovation, and Product Development. Prior to Mercury Business Advisors, he held multiple positions at UnitedHealth Group, including Senior Vice President and Client Experience Officer, Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer, Senior Vice President Business Strategy, President Consumer Health Products, and Senior Director of Enterprise Risk Management.
In many businesses, developing and implementing strategies can be a daunting and frustrating process. Many executives and business decision makers acknowledge the importance of cultivating and executing optimal strategies for growth and success, but the process of building strategies often becomes permanently mired in the seemingly endless requirements of daily business operations. As a result, strategy is pushed aside because it requires too much time and resources to create an effective one – and businesses suffer as a result. With Business Strategy: Plan, Execute, Win!, leading business strategist and adviser Patrick J. Stroh enlightens readers with a series of real-world stories and insights from helping clients to create a plan, execute it, and accurately measure its results. Patrick speaks directly to CEOs, business executives, and those who aspire to C-level careers as he uses engaging parables to impart hard-earned wisdom as it pertains to business strategy development. Each chapter ends by asking readers to note two Golden Nuggets of information from the previous story and to eventually share those nuggets with their boards of directors, staffs, and teams. This unique approach is designed to ensure that readers take actionable insights away from the book and apply them to their own business challenges. In Business Strategy: Plan, Execute, Win!, the author takes a positive, enlightened approach to creating and carrying out successful business strategies. This resource has been designed to be a light-hearted, engaging champion of business strategy, and it focuses on the best approaches for creating a business plan, executing it, and monitoring it. Demonstrates how business strategy, leadership, and general management are all inextricably linked and should operate simultaneously for best results Discusses the key traits of successful chief strategy officers (CSOs) and considers what this role should and should not entail Relies on engaging storytelling to aid in retention and reader involvement Written in an accessible style and filled with advice for planning, communicating, and listening to customers With this guide, you will become familiar with universal success factors for creating solid business strategies, and will better understand the expectations and roles of today’s business strategist.
Praise for BUSINESS STRATEGY: PLAN, EXECUTE, WIN! “I wholeheartedly agree with Patrick Stroh: Good leaders understand strategy and good strategists need to be good leaders. Make this book a strategic tool for improving your business strategy.” — Harvey Mackay, author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Swim with the Sharks without Being Eaten Alive “Oh no, yet another book on strategy, you say?! As a former CFO and now CEO of a multinational company, I can say this is a must read since we all agree that executing strategies is MUCH harder than developing strategies. What is different? Stroh has seen it all at many levels of the C-suite, and I strongly encourage aspiring C-suiters to carefully study his 10 universal truths of successful strategy execution that build on business, reality TV, Hollywood movies, and even agriculture analogies!” — Jeff Thomson, CMA, CAE, President and CEO, IMA (Institute of Management Accountants) “Patrick was my chief strategy and innovation officer during a time of growth and change across healthcare. He is a very thoughtful and strategic leader with real-world insights.” — Jacqueline Kosecoff, PhD, Moriah Partners and former CEO of OptumRx “Finally, strategy made real. Unlike academics who describe strategy in a way that will never work in real life, Patrick Stroh guides you through a concise, realistic path to strategic planning and execution. Only a true practitioner can produce a book about strategy that can be immediately applied to your business. Real strategy guidance for real businesses.” — Lior Arussy, President, Strativity Group; Author of five books, including Customer Experience Strategy “Patrick has taken on the often complex topic of strategy and delivered a useful set of insights in a clear, easy to get your head around format and tone. His approach and style allows you to make quick and practical applications to real business needs and real business solutions. A great read!” — John Sweeney, Owner, Brave New Workshop Comedy Theatre; Author of Innovation at the Speed of Laughter “Discontinuities in a fastly emerging business ecosystem make this book an engaging and effective resource for strategic thinkers, leaders, and students, but a MUST read for those struggling to build a strategic paradigm for their team to align around and drive the future success of their firm with practical advice and useful tools.” — James Hansen, Chairman, JAMF Software; Adjunct Professor, University of St. Thomas
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