Review the list of competencies required of a competent Strategic Thinker (from the ppt) and think about how you’ve used these skills in your work or your everyday life. Describe how you utilized scanning, visioning, reframing, and making common sense, and systems thinking. Describe the scenario, how and why the skill was useful in your leadership capacity. 

Strategic Thinking Competencies

• Develop a vision for where the organization needs to go

• Have a board perspective on the competitive landscape

• Step back and see the BIG picture

( T r a d iti on al St r a t e gic T h i n ki n g W o r d s C o m p l e m e n t a r y St r a t e gic T h i n ki n g W o r d s O b se r v e R e f l e c t Compa r e Conn e c t T e s t C r e a t e D a t a P a tt e r n Di s c u s s V i s ua li z e Pl an I ll u s t r a t e Id e n ti f y B r a i n s t o r m Ana l y z e S y n t h es i z e )• Be comfortable thinking outside of the box


Competencies Scanning Visioning Reframing

Making common sense

Systems Thinking

Strategic Thinking

A collective process about the

present, not just the future – 46

both artful and analytical

Source: Hughes (2014) pg. 72


• The examination of the organization’s current strategic situation.

• Foundation of the SWOT analysis

• Strengths: Internal capabilities

• Weaknesses: Internal limiting capabilities or assets

• Opportunities: conditions or possible future conditions in external environment that may provide opportunities

• Threats: external conditions that put organization into a competitive disadvantage

• Personal SWOT analysis

• Worksheet posted on MyCC

Strengths Weaknesses


Opportunities Threats


• A view of what the organization can or should be

• Important to understand the vision from multiple perspectives

• 75% of interviewed (166) CEOs believe developing and communication of vision is most important factor of effective leadership

• Express ideals and values

• Affirm human dimension

• Put story into context and connect members to core identity

• Clarify expectations

• Describe key drivers of change


Resource: Criswell, C. (2009). Creating a Clear and Compelling Vision CCL

• With malice toward none, with charity for all, with

firmness in the right as God gives us to see the

right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in,

to bind up the nation’s wounds, to care for him

who shall have borne the battle and for his widow

and his orphan, to do all which may achieve and

cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves

and with all nations.

• Second Inaugural Address – Abraham Lincoln, March 4, 1865



• Ability to see things differently

• Questioning and restating implicit beliefs and assumptions

• Bolman and Deal

• Structural

• Human Resource

• Political

• Symbolic

• What would we do differently if we listened to our customers?

• What could we be best at?

• Servant leadership

• Organizational analysis provides leaders and other players with multiple perspectives


Making Common Sense

• Strategic Leadership requires use of common sense amid chaotic conditions

• Shared understanding important because people “often rely on implicit knowledge rather than on explicit knowledge”.

• Explore strategic implications of alternative images of the future

• Collaborate to represent vision using words or images

• Communicate using pictures

• Ask questions to deepen understanding and perspective

• Seek strategic insight

Framing: Identify purpose

Advocating: Explicitly asserting opinion

Illustrating: Telling concrete stories

Inquiring: Asking others in order to learn 51

Systems Thinking

• Approaching problems in a way that “asks how various elements within a system…influence each other” rather than reacting to individual problems as they arrive.

REACT: What happened?


( T R ANS F O R M : W h a t a r e t he M e nt al M o d e ls be li e f s a nd a ssu m p ti ons? ) ( St r u c tu r e D E S I GN: W h a t ’ s been h a ppen i n g ? W he r e a r e t he c h a n g es ) ( ANT I C I P A TE: W h a t ’ s been h a ppen i n g ? P a t t er ns W he r e a r e t he c h a n g es ) ( T r e nds and )

Water Line


Resource: Northwest Earth Institute. (nd) A Systems Thinking Model: The Iceberg . Available on-line.

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