Strategic options: selection and evaluation

Published on November 28, 2021   7 min
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Greetings and welcome to this session on strategy and practice. My name is George Tovstiga and I'm a professor of strategy at EDHEC Business School in France.
In this final session, we examine how strategic options are evaluated and how on the basis of the evaluation, a preferred strategy option is acted. We also examine how we apply a '3-boundaries' approach to deriving implications of a selected strategic option. In the previous session, we examined how strategic options are formed on the basis of the foregoing insight driven analysis approach guided throughout by strategic thinking. Astute, applications of strategic thinking ensures that the choice of options is narrowed down to a manageable and relatively few viable responses. Typically, we are left with perhaps three options at this stage. One option, of course, is always not to respond to a strategic challenge, at least at a given point in time.
How do we proceed to identify a most suitable option from a choice of several possible ones while keeping in mind, in a real business context, there is never a perfect strategic option? For this, we turn to the building blocks of strategy introduced in an earlier session that comprises five essential elements of any strategy. We use these to define key criteria for assessing each of the strategic options in turn. The '5 strategy building blocks' comprise of: strategic intent, impact and congruence at the core of the strategic option, the stakeholder perspective, the external competitive environment, the firm-internal factors and the firm's ability to execute the strategic option. We use these criteria to assess the suitability of a particular strategic option, by subjecting the option to each of the criteria.