I wonder if we women aren’t lacking a gene that makes this form of discipline especially difficult. The final technique, Strategic thinking, means keeping one eye on your higher purpose without taking the other off the bottom line.
Men seem much savvier at strategic thinking. Women, in their eagerness to give back to their community or give birth to their dreams, often neglect this critical step.
To think strategically, you must constantly link your Big Vision to the costs of doing business, connect your mission statement to the profit/loss statement.
One woman explained it this way: “Connect everything with the numbers. To be a successful business woman, you have to strategize all the time on how to make the numbers work.”
And another, a business owner “The secret to a million dollars is continuously reevaluating the expenses to run a lean, mean business.”
And still another: “Once you know where the profit is, it’s just a matter of multiplying how many widgets you need to sell.”
Basically, strategic thinking involves:
- figuring out the costs to do business
- cutting losses when something wasn’t working
- designing effective structures and systems
- daily strategizing and yearly long term planning
Strategic thinking did not come easily to many of these women.
“This is not my nature,” said a former journalist, “I’m a writer. It was something I had to learn. No matter how passionate you are, you have to have business savvy.”
You can learn to think strategically by reading books, taking classes, talking to others, and/or consulting with professionals in or outside your industry.
I find strategic thinking is best done with others. My advice for tackling this technique– form a Strategic Task Force. Invite people (anywhere from 1 to 10) you trust, respect, and admire. Meet with them regularly to help you stay on track strategically or contact them when you need strategic solutions to problematic situations.
Please comment on your experience with strategic thinking. This is definitely something I want to learn more about!