In this, the first of several chapters about strategy formulation, the aim is to explore some basic approaches. The chapter stresses the importance of considering several options. One of the earliest tools of strategic thinking, gap analysis, is demonstrated. The majority of the chapter shows one simple way of examining different strategic options, using a matrix derived from one originally developed by Igor Ansoff. Although not the latest strategic thinking, the approach is still useful as a first stage of thinking, and may be all that is needed in very simple situations.

Some aspects of the strategic planning process have already been discussed in considerable detail. In other chapters most of the essential groundwork ...

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