What is Strategy? It’s a Lot Simpler Than You Think

To many people, strategy is a total mystery. But it’s really not complicated, says Harvard Business School’s Felix Oberholzer-Gee.

00:00 To many people, strategy is a mystery.
00:25 Strategy does not start with a focus on profit.
00:52 It's about creating value.
01:00 There's a simple tool to help visualize the value you create: the value stick.
01:30 What is willingness-to-pay?
02:30 What is willingness-to-sell?
03:14 Remind me: Where does profit come in again?
03:48 How do I raise willingness-to-pay?
05:00 And how do I lower willingness-to-sell?
06:18 Real world example: Best Buy's dramatic turnaround

Companies should simplify and focus on two value drivers, he argues: customer satisfaction and employee satisfaction. By aligning strategic initiatives on these alone, leaders make their workers’ jobs less complicated and improve customer experiences.

Oberholzer-Gee is the author of the Harvard Business Review article “Eliminate Strategic Overload” (https://hbr.org/2021/05/eliminate-strategic-overload) as well as the book “Better, Simpler Strategy: A Value-Based Guide to Exceptional Performance” (https://www.amazon.com/Better-Simpler-Strategy-Value-Based-Exceptional/dp/1633699692/).

Produced and edited by Scott LaPierre
Video by Dave Di Iulio and Elie Honan
Animation by Alex Belser

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