A manager’s ability to think strategically is a very important leadership trait. It is considered more important than other traits such as: innovativeness, communication skills, and influence. It is the trait of strategic thinking that makes a manager, an effective leader. However, this doesn’t infer that other skills are not as important for developing leadership qualities; instead strategic thinking is the thread that binds all the traits together that carves in an effective leader.
Strategic thinking at workplace must be implemented by the manager to streamline the workflow and tweak the workforce to perform at an optimum level.
In order to develop effective strategic thinking at workplace,
following postulates must be considered –
- People: A good connection with the people working in an organization is quintessential for every manager. A successful manager must lay his emphasis on competencies instead of individual job skills. For the proliferation of any organization, it is a ground rule that repetitive and routine jobs must be replaced by non-routine ones. Hence, it is important that the people working in an organization are able to build competencies instead of particular job skills.
- Team Practices: It is important to understand the creative aspect of different tasks and objectives. Besides, creativity requires sufficient time as well. Therefore, an efficient manager must create a thinking space within an organization. He must strike a balance between the day-to-day demands and time to think. To achieve this, brainstorming sessions must be held within an organization to bring together all the employees and build strategic ideas instead of just following the routine work. In addition, the manager must instruct his teammates with the use of professional vocabulary. For example: The word “human-resources” must be used instead of the word “talent”. Such professional jargon ensures that your workforce will feel unique, and are not defined by a single skillset.
- Periscopic Vision: A strategic thinker can only lead an organization if he can think out-of-the-box. He may find inspiration from outside of his silos, in order to understand the changing trends of the business. The change in market must be foreseen by the manager and to anticipate it, a periscopic vision to understand the business trends outside of his sector must be developed.
- Avoid Outsourcing your Thinking: Time and again, managers bring in external consultants to solve organizational problems. Although, outsourcing helps in fixing different organizational problems quickly but it makes your team incompetent to solve organizational problems by themselves. Hence, it is important for a manager to avoid outsourcing, and instead force his team members to solve organizational problems by themselves.
- Strategic Tools: Every successful business is dependent on the employees that carry out their objectives carefully. It is the duty of the manager to provide its employees with the right strategic tools to perform with efficiency. These strategic tools include: building a strategic pathway through brainstorming, ensuring proper balance between routine and non-routine work, ensuring clarity and confidence among employees to follow the guidelines, and motivation to ensure competitive advantage.