Mostafa Sayyadi, CAHRI, AFAIM, CPMgr
Strategy is as a pattern of decisions and plans, which are directed at interacting with the external and internal environment and effectively and efficiently allocating capabilities to achieve organizational objectives and increase profitability. So, organizational strategies are formed to efficiently deploy capabilities and interact with environments– both internal and external. Many companies have plans going well into the future. Long term goals spanning five to fifteen years. While short-term goals are more tactical and are just as important. Competitive advantage is sought by many companies, for instance, Grant, concentrates on knowledge creation and application, and argues that firms are entities that must create and apply knowledge in order to enhance competitive advantage. An example of this is when Jamie Diamond left Citigroup to head up J.P. Morgan in the 2013, he was paid 20 million dollars to not take any people with him to J. P. Morgan for three years. Thus, knowledge creation and application manifest themselves in people, organizations, systems, and processes and should be guarded like gold in the Federal Reserve Bank.
Consultants can see organizational strategy as a sum of objectives, plans, and procedures designed to efficiently and effectively upgrade organizational capabilities and interact with their environment more effectively. In particular, strategy defines a pattern to deploy organizational capabilities and interact with both the internal and the external environment. Consultants can help CEOs manage their knowledge assets to create new ideas and knowledge aimed at achieving organizational objectives. First and foremost, just as one organization is holding knowledge back from competitors they are following suit. Knowledge could be the most important component of success in this ever changing technological environment of today. Thus, organizational strategy is an internal resource affecting knowledge and in most cases, knowledge is the most strategic factor of competitive advantage.
Consultants can help CEOs find the best analysis strategy using a problematic search of various options. Analysis strategy stimulates organizations to apply information systems in their decision-making processes to investigate various alternatives and options. This strategy can promote the knowledge utilization by providing a series of clear guidelines for companies to track future trends in the business environment, and accordingly conduct “what-if” analysis and allocate organizational resources. Herein, consultants can analyze strategic milestones to meet the goals of the employee intellectual stimulation and personal development. Analysis strategy is highly related to firms’ capacity to generate new ideas and knowledge, and can potentially provide new and more innovative solutions for organizational problems as they arise.
In addition, consultants can help CEOs develop an effective strategy to implement a series of basic research aimed at developing a more comprehensive vision for the future by incorporating upcoming trends in the business environment. CEOs can expand the growth opportunities available to organizations that may be challenging but important to close the gap between success and failure. Consultants can provide consulting services to develop relationships and interactions in order to provide valuable resources for the company as a whole. Furthermore, consultants can help CEOs take an effective offensive approach at times and in this case they should employ a defensive strategy. Some CEOs feel that a defensive strategy, while necessary, sets a negative connotation on their span of control. However, a defensive strategy utilizes modifications in order to efficiently use available resources, decrease costs, and control operational risk. CEOs must also take a proactive approach to search for better positions in the business environment. In this case, consultants can help CEOs build communities of practice within companies, thereby inspiring employees to find better opportunities and solutions to problems. Furthermore, consultants can help CEOs set highly desired expectations and provide a suitable situation for employees to identify new opportunities. The tendency to search for workplace issues and their root causes can potentially generate better alternatives to solve them.
Consultants can also help CEOs reshape organizational structure to be more effective when the command center of organizations can disseminate information in a decentralized and organic way as opposed to the mechanical and centralized command center. Decentralized structures shift the power of decision-making to the lower levels and subsequently inspire employees to create new ideas and even implement them while centralized structures may negatively impact interdepartmental communications and inhibit knowledge exchange. Recent research in this area affirms that the there is a negative impact of centralization on various knowledge management processes such as knowledge acquiring, creating, and sharing among both managers and departmental units. Ergo, consultants play a critical role in building more effective structures within organizations.
In addition, consultants can provide consulting services to drive an effective culture to inspire employees to create new ideas and acquire knowledge from various sources such as customers. This step can be essential to identify the needs of customers and also recognize the emerging changes in the business environment. Consultants can, therefore, create the most appropriate workplaces to facilitate innovation and to motivate employees to solve their current problems in a more innovative manner. CEOs steering the organizational culture facilitate innovation, by undertaking initiatives that improve knowledge transfer, thus enhancing the performance of employees and the implementation of effective changes to maintain the quality of products and services. This can also exploit organizational performance, though improving the quality of products and services, and the organizational revenue. Furthermore, consultants can help CEOs develop a learning culture in which people continuously grow and develop both personally and professionally. This is similar to a value-chain approach. Consultants also need to first support this approach because they play a strategic role in building effective learning organizations through applying incentives as mechanisms to develop a more innovative climate and managing effective tools to acquire knowledge from external sources.
Mostafa Sayyadi, CAHRI, AFAIM, CPMgr, works with senior business leaders to effectively develop innovation in companies, and helps companies—from start-ups to the Fortune 100—succeed by improving the effectiveness of their leaders. He is a business book author and a long-time contributor to HR.com and Consulting Magazine and his work has been featured in these top-flight business publications.