Pieter Scholtz

Strategy Formulation: Good versus Great

As leaders, there comes a time when you reach a comfortable state of “being good” at what you do. But, if you want to build a successful organisation, there is no space to be comfortable with being “good”. Perhaps for a season, but not if you want to achieve exponential growth. Ask yourself, “What is needed to take my organisation from good to great?”

In his book, Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap… and Others Don’t, Jim Collin unpacks why some organisations stagnate while others continue to strive for success. He states that, “Greatness is not a function of circumstance. Greatness, it turns out, is largely a matter of conscious choice, and discipline”. In order to grow from strength to strength, you need a strong strategy to take your organisation to the next level.

There are 3 key components that are critical to the formation of a strong strategy. Let’s unpack:


As an organisation, you need to ascertain what you are most passionate about. Passion guides you towards what you are striving to achieve. It reminds you why you are working towards achieving that goal. Equally so, passion tells you where you do not need to be investing and prevents you from making decisions that will disenfranchise your organisation in the long run.


The default approach of many business owners is to try to solve every problem they see. That is not a sustainable approach to running an organisation as it creates chaos and misdirection. When you are formulating a strategy to take your organisation from good to great, you need to ask yourself what is the one thing that you are choosing to be world-class at. Your chosen world-class area of focus should be one that you are intensely passionate about; enough to make you want to be the best in your field.

An immense amount of work is required to decipher what it is that the organisation is good at, what is required for the organisation to continue to be good in that area, and how the organisation will become the best in its field now that its central purpose has been identified. Only those organisations who are absolutely clear on what they want to be world-class at will be able to become experts in their fields and maintain sustainable growth over generations.


Lastly, what are the few economic drivers that ensure that your organisation is growing on solid ground? You need to have a firm understanding of what those economic drivers are that contribute to the success of your organisation. Once this is understood, those drivers need to be measured and monitored on a week-to-week basis as they guide your strategy formulation and decision-making process. Over time, those economic drivers will become forecasters used to determine whether the organisation will grow sustainably or not.

Whatever those economic drivers are – be it profit per segment or cost per product produced – everyone in the organisation must be clear on what the main measure of success is. Thereafter, all strategies need to be aligned towards delivering that economic driver.  

In Conclusion

Being too comfortable with the “good” is the biggest threat to achieving the “great”. In a continued effort to help organisations move from good to great, I aim to help business owners identify their passion and teach them how to communicate it well enough for it to become an actionable strategy. They are then better able to formulate a solid strategy, grounded in that passion, while working towards being a world-class expert in their field, and ultimately achieving those economic drivers they identified. It is simply a matter of being consistent, focused and determined to achieve continuous growth.


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