Strategy as a cure for modern malaise

OK, this title sounds ridiculous. But hear me out, and by the end of this essay, I think I’ll have won you over. First, here’s the issue: The modern world is boring. Now admittedly it’s many other things too. And many of those things might make you happy to be living in the here and […]

But seriously, does strategy even matter?

One of my concepts that long time readers will be familiar with is this: Strategy is optional. It really is.  You don’t have to do it.  Most successful people and businesses don’t even bother – at least not consciously.  They just hustle and experiment and try, and get their rewards regardless.  Generally we can say […]

Three reasons great strategists think more about style than substance

“The world doesn’t reward the people with the best ideas. It rewards the people who are best at communicating ideas.” – David Perrell We all know that ideas (and strategies) are worth nothing, and execution is everything.  This is obvious, or should be anyway. But the notion above? This is more subtle, and I think […]

My 5 contrarian beliefs on strategy

If I could select one single idea from my body of work which I think is the most powerful and transformative it would be this: The importance of disagreeing with your competitors. If you’ve been following my stuff for a while you’ll know all about this.  The point is that it’s not enough to simply […]

Four hard truths about growing an audience

Sure, people want to hear from me about strategy. But, if I’m honest, I know there’s a sizeable minority – perhaps even a majority – who really want to hear about how I went from 0 to 70,000 followers in 5 months. It’s understandable, because in our current climate you’re sometimes made to feel that […]

How to write and talk in a strategically powerful way

Pretty much every “strategy” I see looks something like this: Whether or not the example in this image is “trying” to be a strategy, the point still stands – the discipline, and indeed business in general, is polluted by a style of communication that actually obscures meaning rather than revealing it. I think we massively […]

The spiritual war between management and strategy

A running theme of this newsletter, and the “strategy industry” in general, is the continued inability for individuals and organisations to “get it”. Why is it so hard? What is the blocker that makes a fundamental business discipline (perhaps THE fundamental discipline), so bloody difficult to grasp?  Why does nobody know what it is?  Why […]

The Cybertruck is another strategic masterclass from Tesla

Sorry.  Here I am writing about Tesla again. I don’t even like Tesla!  But damn they just make for the cleanest strategic case studies, so I can’t help it. Elon Musk’s “secret masterplan” that got the company off the ground in the first place (and pretty much invented the electric car category) is basically the […]

How a team of accountants created the greatest brand of all time

Like anyone, when I read a non-fiction book I’m looking for lessons.  Stuff I can use, and of course stuff I can bring to you in this newsletter. Naturally I want such lessons to be surprising and counter-intuitive, but even so I wasn’t quite prepared for this one: Wanna create a legendary brand?  Then leave […]

The magic of Schwarzenegger Goals

What is the point of a goal? Sounds weird doesn’t it.  Like a non-sensical question.  When we set a goal, surely the goal itself is the point, right? It’s the thing we want. The thing we’re striving for. The destination. The end. A goal – we assume – doesn’t have any greater purpose than that.  […]