Strategic Frameworks Firms that use a Strategic Framework demonstrate 4-8% better performance

What is a Strategic Framework anyway?

The term Strategic Framework sounds important, complicated, and, quite frankly, entirely academic. Does it really have any practical place in a real business setting? Before you answer, let’s break down the meaning of the words.

Strategy can be defined as “Choices to differentiate and win”. Framework is defined as a “a structure or organization that supports and or guides the development of something useful”. Therefore, a Strategic Framework can be defined as “a structure or organizing principle that helps define an enterprise’s choices to win and realize success”.

Why should you use a Strategic Framework?

The underlying assumption here is that every organization wants to win. So, if the organization wants to win, it has to make choices –choices around what success looks like, choices around where to play, choices about how to differentiate, choices around the capabilities and systems to develop. That’s a lot of choices –very important choices. But, its not enough to simply make the choices. The organization must ensure employees understand the choices and align their work to them. Organizations use strategic frameworks to help employees (and shareholders, customers, suppliers) make sense of their key choices. Firms that use a Strategic Framework to guide their decisions demonstrate 4-8% better performance than firms that don’t use a Strategic Framework.

A Strategic Framework is a structure or organizing principle that helps define an enterprise’s choices to win.

What type of Strategic Framework should an organization use?

There are lots of Strategic Frameworks to choose from. In fact, over 80 different frameworks have been introduced since 1958. They all have slightly different applications and vary in complexity. At Bold North Strategy Partners, we use the Playing to Win strategic framework developed by Roger Martin and A.G. Lafley.

We advocate the use of this framework for two reasons:

  1. It focuses on winning and we believe every organization wants to win.
  2. It is easy for employees to understand. When employees understand the strategy, they are much more likely to align their work to the strategy and give discretionary effort. That’s how winning starts.