Strategic Thinking

Things have been busy around here … that might be the understatement of the year. Busy is a good thing. No, it’s a great thing. We are fortunate to have a lot of really exciting and interesting work every day.

But lately I’ve found myself glued to my desk chair, plugging away at all of the details, barely take a break to rest my tired eyes or stiff fingers. The majority of my time has been focused on the day-to-day details of a lot of different projects, managing the nuts and bolts and just getting stuff (for lack of a better word) done.

Then late last week I started to work on a few fresh, new projects and I had to take a step back, pull my head up out of the details and get myself back in Strategic Thinker mode. So what did I do? I went online for some inspiration and found a great article that reminded me what it takes and what it means to be a good Strategic Thinker.

The full article, 6 Habits of True Strategic Thinkers by Paul J. H. Schoemaker can be found here, but I thought I’d highlight a few key points.

Great strategic thinkers and strategic leaders do several things really well. Specifically:

  • Anticipate: Look at not just what is coming next week, next month, but what is coming next year.
  • Think Critically: Challenge conventional thinking – including your own.
  • Interpret: Don’t make rash decisions. Hold strong and review information from many sources before forming a viewpoint.
  • Decide: Strike a balance between speed and quality.
  • Align: Foster conversation and build trust.
  • Learn: Celebrate success and failures that provide insight.

It’s clear being a truly great strategic leader and thinker will not happen overnight but is more a process of trail and error and continuing to seek out educational opportunities to fill-in the gaps and become even more proficient.  Here’s to trying at least!

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