Strategy tools, courses & learning materials for individuals, universities and business
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Jim McDonnell, partner in PricewaterhouseCoopers strategy practice says ... "the challenge our people face in working on strategy is the existence of too much data, but not enough insight....[They] use strategy dynamics to cut through the detail from the start of their work. As a result, they are able to raise questions and identify issues with much greater insight than they have previously been able to do"

... have applied the principles and practices both at Sun Microsystems and Microsoft.

"I had the pleasure of learning Strategy Dynamics from Dr Warren several years ago and since that time, have applied the principles and practices in several business units both at Sun Microsystems and Microsoft. This approach to understanding strategic business issues and subsequently designing, comparing, and communicating alternatives and interventions has been invaluable.

In contrast to market-based explanations, the ability to demonstrate quantitatively the causal factors that enhance or impede business performance has enabled the various management teams I've worked with using this approach to have insightful dialogue about the real impacts of proposed actions and to select from among them based on facts and logic, not whim or wishful thinking. The resulting performance speaks for itself - everywhere I've introduced this, it remains a key tool in the senior managers' kit."

John Kapson, Managing Consultant, Sun Microsystems

... fundamental....all our people are thoroughly trained in the approach

"Strategy Dynamics is fundamental to the work we do at Vanguard to deliver powerful insights for leading global companies in the sectors we serve. The method allows us to identify high-value brand strategies - often radically different than is currently being pursued - that other consulting firms with conventional approaches simply cannot match, so we ensure all our people are thoroughly trained in the approach."

Lars Finskud, Owner and CEO, Vanguard Strategy

...learned more in those 40 minutes than I did the rest of the conference.

"Kim Warren was my first time attendee mentor at the 2007 System Dynamics Conference in Boston. I spent about 40 minutes with him talking about the conference and system dynamics. It was the best part of the conference. I learned more in those 40 minutes than I did the rest of the conference. I have all of his books and read them frequently. I highly recommend them."

Mark Frye, Senior Systems Engineer at OnStar by GM

...developing the insight to more rapidly create intuitive and actionable business strategy.

"Strategy Dynamics added a unique and proven discipline to the strategic work we were doing. Using the proven Strategy Dynamic process focused our limited resources on organizing strategic issues, identifying the critical resources, and developing the insight to more rapidly create intuitive and actionable business strategy. Much of the resulting Strategy Dynamics materials can then be used to effectively communicate new strategies to other members of the team."

Warren Farr, CEO, Refrigeration Sales Corporation

Editors note: Warren Farr took Kim Warren's Strategy Dynamics course through WPI and applied the principles to his own business. You can see a presentation of his work at here. integral part of the service proposition to our clients

Strategy Dynamics is an integral part of the service proposition to our clients. Structuring problems and making fact-based analyses using the strategy dynamics principles consistently allows us to identify growth opportunities, even in mature product categories, which would typically have been overlooked using classic approaches.

It allows us to generate important, new and very actionable insights on consumer dynamics – i.e., how consumers chose and churn between brands over time and the drivers of those choices – allowing us to establish a robust performance comprehension. The approach helps to very clearly identify where clients should focus and prioritize efforts and how these priorities change over time – and it helps differentiate us from most other consulting firms. This has earned us the right to advise leading global consumer companies on brand and marketing strategy.

Lars Finskud, CEO Vanguard Strategy, London

Editors note: Lars is also author of Competing for Choice.

... integral part of development of a sales strategy, a workforce planning model, and a marketing plan.

"The Strategy Dynamics course has helped shape my perspective on how strategy can be applied in a real world setting. There are numerous strategic frameworks that exist, however, few can be applied to practical situations that can be better understood using strategic direction. Strategy Dynamics complements many of these frameworks and synthesizes the key points to a coherent strategy that can be executed with the resources identified in the Strategy Dynamics model.

Often, there is a disconnect between a multi-year strategic plan and a short term tactical plan. Strategy Dynamics draws a clear distinction about how various scenarios can play out in the future and quickly highlights areas that need to be addressed. The fact that Strategy Dynamics is data driven makes it that much more powerful when analyzing multiple scenarios and deciding the right direction.

After taking the Strategy Dynamics course, I began leading several of the strategic planning sessions and have a better understanding of what questions to ask that would give us the answer. The application of some of the Strategy Dynamics concepts like resource levels and flow played an integral part when I developed a sales strategy, a workforce planning model, and a marketing plan. Without the insight and knowledge from the Strategy Dynamics course, I would have missed several variables that ultimately contributed to the successful implementation of each initiative." Eric Back, Principal - Business Consultant inspiration, setting a benchmark that we refer to continually.

Kim Warren has mentored each of us and we have relied on Strategy Dynamics to gradually build up and share a variety of services and products for enhancing the quality of business decisions. His ability to make clear quantitative thinking accessible and at the same time relevant has been an inspiration, setting a benchmark that we refer to continually.

George Simpson PhD (UK) and Pascal Gambardella PhD (USA), CSC

...impressively professional.

I'd just like to say how impressively professional the whole strategy dynamics enterprise is. All the materials that accompany the course are first-rate and there's a huge amount of really useful support material. The support is fast and focused. I'm gradually internalising the gist of the strategy dynamic argument and I have the feeling it's going to change the way I see system dynamics, strategy, and business generally.

Dr Tim Rogers, Lecturer, School of Management, University of South Australia

...this course provides a rigorous and stepwise approach...

Professor Warren:

I want to thank you for everything you have done for me over the past year. Your class is really a “put it all together class” that fits in very well with the excellent course selections in System Dynamics at WPI.

I am an old timer compared to many of the students in this program and several years back I had been looking at taking more graduate classes with some interest in exploring an MBA program. I took a couple of course at WPI in the MBA program and liked them, but they didn’t “hit the spot.” While “poking” around at the offerings at WPI I stumbled into the SSPS department and was intrigued with the course description for SD550 Managing Complexity so I signed up. Immediately found the experience with SD amazing, offering a systems thinking approach that had the potential to weave together my engineering, systems engineering, and business background.

Although my experience with SD has been amazing I was often troubled with structuring SD into a usable methodology. I would ask questions of the professors, TAs, and other students in my classes for recommended best practices to systematically apply SD techniques. I received some good guidance, but it was more check list based. The strategic architecture you have formulated and instructed us on in this course provides a much more rigorous and stepwise approach to leveraging the SD modeling techniques that really helps “put it all together.” The simplicity and elegance of your instructed framework approach makes it much easier for one to start “painting” in the components of the architecture (i.e., what performance are you trying to optimize?, identify the resources that drive performance, etc.). By applying your core architecture approach it also helped “shoo away the bats” in my brain and guided on which “foot to put in front of the other one” when thinking about a problem.

Jim Hacunda ( Took the Strategy Dynamics online course with WPI, Fall 2009)

Related Videos

Jim McDonnell, PwC, speaking at Strategic Management Dynamics book launch. (4 minutes).
Warren Farr talks about how he used strategy dynamics in his own business. (70 minutes).