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Is Your Innovation Problem Really a Strategy Problem? - Tim Kastelle - Harvard Business Review

Posted on by Brandon Klein

Top-down strategy is dangerous. When one group creates the strategy and expect another bunch to implement it, the result will be an air sandwich. The consequences of this are that strategies that may be great on paper die on the ground. Expanding the number of people that contribute to strategy creation is one good way to avoid this problem. Innovation and strategy are tightly linked. Merchant is focused on strategy creation, but the same issues are true for innovation. Innovation works best when everyone in the firm is involved with creating and executing the ideas that will drive the firm to success. Our problem isn’t always obvious. The firm right now thinks that they have an innovation process problem, but they’re really facing a strategy problem. If they change the way they make strategy, they will start to get different innovation outcomes. And that will make it easier to realize their strategy.