Chapter 4

Paradigm Cycles and Strategy Prisons

Strategic prisons are overarching mental models that become sweeping guiding principles for making strategic and tactical decisions under a broad range of circumstances and that ultimately trap organizations. They are pieces of popular intuition that eventually turn into well-accepted truisms and get entrenched into the belief systems of decision makers. For example, how many of us will argue against the principles of differentiation, competency, customer satisfaction, diversification, or many such well-accepted truisms? Of course, they may well be important considerations when making key strategic choices in many domains and may often be true. After all, they have emerged from the collective experiences ...

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