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Strategy Dynamics Course

The Strategy Dynamics Course explains the fundamental structures capturing the interdependencies and subtleties that drive performance of real-world organisations and issues.

This course shows how to use models of such systems to understand why performance results have changed up to now, where results will likely go under current plans, and how to deliver sustained, stronger performance. (The companion Dynamic Business Modeling Course, shows how to build such models.)

Strategy Dynamics skills are essential for leaders and teams at any level, in any situation, in any organisation. The concepts work, rigorously and reliably:

  • for a department or for a whole enterprise
  • for new ventures or initiatives, as well as for established businesses
  • for one-off initiatives and challenges and for continuing plans
  • for public services and non-profit cases, as well as for business cases.

Is this course for you?

Do you or your team have responsibility for a business, department or function, or are you a consultant advising people with those responsibilities?

… and do you need to develop plans, either for continuing business activities or to deal with one-off challenges?
… and do you need rigorous, fact-based frameworks for developing more integrated and confident plans to ensure strong performance into the future?

If the answer to any of these questions is 'Yes' then this course is for you

Teachers

You can adopt the course materials to deliver yourself. Being student-led, the learning-per-contact-hour is very high, and much more engaging than other types of learning. More information here

Course options

Delivered in two parts:

  • Part 1 "Core Frameworks" (5 classes) explains the core system of factors driving performance of your enterprise or department. The frameworks will help you develop stronger, integrated plans, both for on-going operations and for dealing with one-off challenges or opportunities.
  • Part 2 "Extension Frameworks"(6 additional classes) provides additional frameworks for common topics and functional issues. These will enable you to plan more confidently for many situations, such as tackling competitors, building strong staff and customer pipelines, or responding to the stream of information from KPI or balanced scorecard systems.

Self-taught option

Start any time
  • screen-show videos explaining the principles and frameworks of the method
  • … with quizzes to check your understanding
  • exercises with pre-built working models, so you can experience how the principles play out in practice, and improve your decision-making skills
  • printable worksheets for you to sketch how the structures apply in your own case, and plot out how performance might be improved

Course organisation

Part 1 "Core Frameworks" of the course consists of 5 classes covering the core elements of the Strategy Dynamics framework. A weekly email reminder is sent for each class, but classes are available at all times, so you can work through at a faster or slower pace if you wish.

Part 2 "Extension Frameworks" consists of a further 6 classes, explaining additional frameworks that add to the power of the core structure. Each of these further frameworks is also useful on its own, for tackling specific functional and other topics, such as staff and customer pipelines, competitive rivalry, policy design, and intangible factors.

Course: Core plus added frameworks

Class Summaries and Segments

Part 1 - Core Frameworks

Class 1: - Performance Through Time
The challenge in managing strategy is to improve performance steadily over time (profits, quality, sales…). We start with how to define this objective in different cases.

1.0 Summary segment
1.1 Appropriate objectives
1.2 Strategy and Business Value

Class 2: Resources Drive Performance
We achieve performance by building up resources (customers,staff, products, capacity, cash…). We show how to define and measure these, and their links to the performance we want to improve.

2.0 Summary segment
2.1 Standard types of resource
2.2 Specific resource types

Class 3: Resources accumulate
It is hard to build resources because it takes time, and they can be lost. We explain how resources "flow" in and out of the business, and how this changes the amount of resource we have over time.

3.0 Summary segment
3.1 Getting it right
3.2 Accounting for resources, and cash
3.3 Supply resources and flow

Class 4a: Interdependency
We need some resources to build others (a good product-range to win customers, for example). We explain how to map these interdependencies and how this controls our ability to grow and sustain resources.

4a.0 Interdependence and feedback. Summary
4a.1 Feedback
4a.2 Self-dependence, potential resources and product diffusion

Class 4b The Strategic Architecture
The system of inter-dependent resources at the heart of any business is "the strategic architecture". We explain how this system explains the way performance changes over time, and how it can be used to manage the future.

4b.0 The "strategic architecture". Summary
4b.1 Implementing the generic structure
4b.2 Costs of sustaining and growing resources
4b.3 The business as a cash-generating "machine"

Part 2 - Extension Frameworks

Class 5. Resource attributes
Resources vary in certain key characteristics (customer size, product appeal, staff skill…). We show how these important attributes change over time, how they can be managed, and the impact they have on business performance.

5.0 Resource Attributes: Summary
5.1 Attributes: Doing it right! -
5.2 Working with the customer quality-curve
5.3 Resources with multiple attributes
5.4 When one resource brings access to another

Class 6. Resource development
Often resources cannot be simply brought into existence in a single step but have to be developed through stages (making customers aware and informed, before they buy, or promoting staff, for example). We explain these stages and how management choices can push resources through the pipeline quickly.

6.0 Developing Resources: Summary
6.1 Developing Resources: Doing it right!
6.2 The customer "choice pipeline"
6.3 Deteriorating Resources

Class 7. Competition
Competition is mostly about winning, sustaining and holding on to important resources, especially customers, but sometimes staff and other assets. We show 3 universal mechanisms that – alone or in combination – drive competition over time, and how to pick priorities amongst the many factors that could be important.

7.0 Competition: Summary
7.1 Dealing with many competitors
7.2 Industry dynamics

Class 8. Policies and Decisions
It is not practical to make every important decision from first principles, every time, so management use policies (decision guidelines) – these may be explicit or just informal. We explain how a policy works, and how to add it to the business system as a mechanism to ensure continuing strong performance.

8.0 Policies and Decisions Summary
8.1 The bigger picture of Strategy and Policy
8.2 Dealing with multiple objectives

Class 9. Intangible resources
Some resources are not easily measured or managed, but can still have an important impact. We explain how to define and measure these intangible resources, and how to understand and manage their impact on performance.

9.0 Intangible factors: Summary
9.1 Negative factors, thresholds and tipping points
9.2 Information-based resources
9.3 Quality-related intangibles

Class 10. Capabilities
Organisations can build and sustain resources better if they have a strong capability for the task – a collective ability that is more than the sum of individual skills. We explain what makes up a capability, and how it can be developed and sustained.

10.0 Capabilities: Summary
10.1 Operational Capabilities
10.2 The Power of Multiple Capabilities

Make the most of Strategy Dynamics This wrap-up class discusses practical issues in making use of the method.

Core Frameworks:

£ 90 +VAT

Extension Frameworks:

£ 90 +VAT

Teacher offer
SD logo with morter board


Why take this course? (7min)
Why strategy needs dynamics (10min)
How the online classes follow the strategy dynamics process (15min)
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