Strategy is simple.

A strategy is just having a reason for doing something. It’s a hypothesis about what you think will be the next right decision based on what you’re trying to accomplish.

The desire to make strategic decisions is simple, actually making strategic decisions is much trickier.  Even though you make a decision for a reason, that does not mean you will be successful. We hope a strategic approach will take us closer to the success we’re seeking, but a strategy is not a guarantee.

Being strategic requires holding many views of a situation at once. There is a broad view that surveys all that is happening now, a detailed look that assesses how the pieces are adding up to the whole, and a vision for the ideal future you’re working to create. Making strategic decisions is a matter of comparing the ideal to the now and figuring out how to improve the details that are falling short.

Easier said than done!

You can get at strategy through digging into big questions, but you can also consider the overall values of your organization. Sometimes making a sound strategic decision is just finding out where your principals are out of alignment with your actions. A strategy is always about being intentional and seeing the big picture. Often people get uncomfortable and uncertain when thinking about the big picture questions, and just move forward to get over the discomfort of the unknown.

A strategy is about creating the future by being intentional; this is why a strategic plan is so critical to design. Designers create something from nothing.

If we are to be successful in our endeavors, we need to know what purpose our design serves in the first place.