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Implementing World Class IT Strategy by Peter A. High

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Chapter 7Reviewing, Refreshing, and Communicating Strategy

Is strategy more art than science? As with innovation, many people think that strategy is largely a result of inspiration. The truth is that there is as much science to the process as there is art. It requires a disciplined process driven by time and events. From IT’s perspective, strategy also requires that IT have resources in the room at the earliest points in the conversation when strategic plans are in formulation at the divisional level, since IT should have a role in shaping those plans. The substance of those plans should shape the strategy of IT. This logic extends to the corporate strategy as well, and, fortunately, an increasing number of CIOs report to CEOs.1 Thus they are likely to be involved in the formulation of the strategic plans at the corporate level.

Once IT has a strategy, it needs review and adjustment as events unfold; it needs also to be communicated.

Reviewing and Refreshing Strategy

Both time- and event-based reviews are needed. Strategic plans begin with a certain set of assumptions about

  • The company
  • The economic environment
  • Customers
  • Employees
  • The company’s product and service offerings
  • The product and service offerings of the competition
  • The legal and regulatory environment
  • Other factors

Strategic plans reflect the assumptions at a point in time. To ensure that plans remain relevant, especially for companies in which the pace of change is fast in any important respect, nimbleness in reflecting ...

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