The video below is an intelligent summary of Professor Mintzberg’s ideas on crafting strategy – a concept which is quite different from the notion of strategic planning, as among others advocated by Professor Michael Porter. And if you want to know more about the different viewpoints of Mintzberg and Porter, here is an article at Forbes by Karl Moore (yet another professor): Porter or Mintzberg: Whose view of strategy is the most relevant today?
Video (2 min) –Crafting Strategy (Henry Mintzberg, video by Bobbie Kite, 11 May 2013)
Based on his lectures and seminars, Henry Mintzberg created a CoachingOurselves peer learning topic called Crafting Strategy. Hundreds of management teams around the world have used the peer learning topic Mintzberg developed to run a self-directed 90 minute peer learning exercise in which they rethink their strategy process and business unit or organizations strategy.
Essay – Teaching smart people how to learn (Chris Argyris)
This essay is as pertinent now as when Chris Argyris wrote it, some 20 years ago.
Argyris: “Any company that aspires to succeed in the tougher business environment of the 1990s must first resolve a basic dilemma: success in the marketplace increasingly depends on learning, yet most people don’t know how to learn. What’s more, those members of the organization that many assume to be the best at learning are, in fact, not very good at it. I am talking about the well-educated, high-powered, high-commitment professionals who occupy key leadership positions in the modern corporation.
Most companies not only have tremendous difficulty addressing this learning dilemma; they aren’t even aware that it exists. The reason: they misunderstand what learning is and how to bring it about. As a result, they tend to make two mistakes in their efforts to become a learning organization.
First, most people define learning too narrowly as mere ‘problem solving’, so they focus on identifying and correcting errors in the external environment. Solving problems is important. But if learning is to persist, managers and employees must also look inward.
They need to reflect critically on their own behavior, identify the ways they often inadvertently contribute to the organization’s problems, and then change how they act. In particular, they must learn how the very way they go about defining and solving problems can be a source of problems in its own right.”