A simple word that can be complex in the ways it is used and defined. If we are going to understand how to make successful strategies, we need to understand what strategy is and how it can help us take steps towards becoming more successful. Simply put, a strategy is a plan. It’s like playing a game with your circumstances. Just like in a game of strategy we need to think several steps ahead of our opponents. But if we’re smart, we won’t just think ahead of our opponents we will also think ahead of our customers. Even if you don’t have a company, employees, or customers, understanding strategy can still be majorly beneficial to you and your future endeavors. We all have influence and best knowing how to build that influence and its impact is going to take some strategic planning. In this article, we are going to discuss 3 steps to understand different elements of what strategy is and what it means to apply it.
Know how you think
Knowing how you think, process, and work through different circumstances in your life is so vital to developing a successful strategy. If we’re going to be able to think ahead of our opponents and think ahead of our customers, we must know what will work best for us. There are several ways to better understand how you think. Becoming self-aware can be a daily struggle, but if you take the right steps to develop good habits, you’ll find that it’s not all that difficult to develop strong thought patterns. One of the most effective ways to begin developing a healthy thought pattern is to slow down. Just as athletes know that they need to take days of rest, as strategists, we also need to take time to rest so that we don’t lose our psychological edge. On the Fitbit blog, Dean Karnazes talks about the different ways that athletes need to take days of rest. He says, “just like our daily step goals, we need to set daily rest goals.” Developing healthy habits will help you better understand how you think and help sustain you as you learn to strategize well.
Knowing your influence and growing it
What is the strategy within your influence? What is your influence? That depends entirely on what you are trying to achieve. Maybe your influence looks like the market you are competing in. Possibly you are a YouTuber and you need to develop a strategy to become more successful and gain more subscribers and viewers. Maybe you are a photographer trying to build an Instagram portfolio to drive people to your website. Whoever you are and whatever you are trying to accomplish you have a great amount of influence. In a post on Entrepreneur, a brand dedicated to helping those developing and starting businesses, Meiko Patten interviews a behavioral investigator. In this post, the writer breaks down 7 steps to increase influence. The first on her list is connecting with people emotionally. Depending on your platform for communication with your audience you may choose to go about this in different ways but knowing its importance will help you make great strides towards knowing your influence and gaining a greater amount of it. Having a strong strategy and sticking to it will help develop your influence.
Know what form of strategy is best for you and your company
Essentially there are two overarching strategies. You can either do what everyone else is doing in a better way or you can do something no one is doing. In an article published through the Harvard Business Review, Andrea Ovans breaks down some great thinkers on the subject throughout the last 50 years. Michael Porter, a Harvard grad and now professor at the school, has developed some great ideas and a Five Forces Framework that can help you to understand and evaluate the competitive density for your company or product. If you’re interested in these ideas you can look more into Porter here. Deciding which of these two strategies is best for you depends on what market you are in, what you are trying to accomplish, and how many competitors you might have. Obviously, this looks different for everyone, but in some ways, both strategies for growth can apply to different aspects of your brand. Hopefully, this helps you understand and better grasp what strategy is and how it can be applied. We can always assist you with your business strategy needs as well! Give our strategy services a look and request a free proposal if you want to plan an effective strategy.
Cole AndersonCole Anderson is a student at North Central University where he studies music. As a music major, he is obviously very interested and talented in playing guitar and other forms of music. When he’s not studying, writing, or playing guitar, you can typically find him hanging out with his girlfriend Jessica or being a good person and helping someone in need (cause he’s just like that).
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