When you’ve been working at a company for years, or simply been in the same career for a while, it’s easy to get stuck. Being a strong leader requires practicality and realism, but just as importantly it requires having an eye for innovation and the vision to execute on it. The answer to that question helps an executive drive organizational strategy through various ways to maximize results in minimal time, maintain a bird’s-eye view of the big picture and ensure the team aligns its goals with those of the organization. Strategic thinking boils down to one simple question: What is the desired outcome? How could you do this? A technology they don’t have? Strategic leaders must be adept at finding common ground and achieving buy-in among stakeholders who have disparate views and agendas. If you never allow team members to innovate, they will have no examples inside of the organization to point to in order to make suggestions in the future. Empathetic leaders gain the respect of employees and are more likely to successfully execute the organization’s strategies because they know exactly what it takes to get the job done. By continuing, you agree to our use of cookies to optimize and personalize your experience on our site. Being honest isn’t always easy, because it requires communicating both the good and the bad. Communication also extends to “softer skill” practices, like having an open-door policy or holding regular one-on-one meetings with team members. Is it a skill? Either she will understand the risk that must be mitigated or she will understand the opportunity that must be taken – and execute appropriate strategies in response. This is the natural propensity of some personalities and also shows up in terms of tests of brain dominance. Empathy. Strategic decisions impact areas outside your own functional area, business unit, or even the organization. Editor’s note: Aaron K. Olson and B. Keith Simerson have co-taught MSLOC 431: Leading with Strategic Thinking since its inception in 2009. What you don’t know or understand can hurt you. The strategic thinker is the quintessential problem solver – he believes that for every challenge there is a response that will turn that challenge to their advantage. Here are ten abilities that are central to using wisdom in strategic leadership. I think it is that the strategic thinker most frequently looks into the future and has an awareness of things in the present that could bring about change in the future. Commitment is the ability to stay focused on what will make you successful. We probably do quite a bit of strategic thinking in all aspects of our lives, but it's necessary to put it on a formal level in order to really take action. The notion that you are either strategic or operational is rubbish – a strategy that does not show up clearly in the way the business operates is nothing but a dream. CMOE’s Applied Strategic Thinking program addresses these skills and concepts. Strategic thinking is often looked upon as something that only certain people can do. The first three principles of strategic leadership involve nontraditional but highly effective approaches to decision making, transparency, and innovation.1. This essentially means looking at the definition of strategy and how it can be linked to leadership. What are the benefits of strategic thinking? All leaders, but particularly those beholden to regulatory compliance, should be clear about plans, progress, and results. Strategic leadership is truly a mixture of skill, behaviors, and perspectives. Different leadership approaches impact the vision and direction of growth and the potential success of … Strategic thinking and leadership have become some of the most fundamental elements which provide an organization with direction and vision. What are they doing that is different from the other sales teams? 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