CHAPTER 7

Stakeholders First, Strategy Second

by Graham Kenny

What stakeholders do you depend on for success?

When setting strategy, it might seem obvious that you’d need to ask this question. But most managers, even at the world’s largest companies, don’t think about it. Instead, they focus on a narrow set of key performance indicators and wade right into developing solutions that feed those metrics, burrowing deeper and deeper into the details. Very quickly they lose their “helicopter view” and get stuck in fix-it mode. Suggestions come one after another: Engage sales outlets. Devise an advertising program. Attract, retain, and develop capable people. Good stuff, perhaps, but how would you know if you haven’t defined a context for success? ...

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