Excellence in strategic thinking… and appropriate implementation… align almost perfectly with what virtually every human being defines as success, regardless of how they define success.
Successful pastors with growing and vibrant churches think and implement strategically. The same is true for CEOs and senior leaders of all highly successful for profit and not-for-profit organizations across the world. Highly successful mentors, coaches (both business and sports), consultants, advisors, bankers, lawyers, financial planners, and investors such as Warren Buffet think strategically. Like him or not, Bill Gates is an excellent strategic thinker. These successful people all take time to think and act strategically about that which they want to accomplish, that which they want to contribute, and the legacy they want to leave when their time on earth is gone. All true and lasting success involves excellence in strategic thinking and implementation.
In chapter 5 of his book, How Successful People Think, John Maxwell addresses the critical importance of strategic thinking. He acknowledges that because each of us is unique, with a different set of life experiences, perspectives and abilities; each of us approach strategic thinking a little differently. However, the issue is not how we think strategically, but if and when and how often we carve out precious time to intentionally and purposefully think strategically. Maxwell discusses in detail, “why you should release the power of strategic thinking” in your life:
- Strategic thinking simplifies the difficult. “The man who is prepared has his battle half fought.” – Miguel de Cervantes
- Strategic thinking prompts you to ask the right questions
- Strategic thinking prompts customization. “Successful generals make plans to fit circumstances, but do not try to create circumstances to fit plans.” – General George S. Patton
- Strategic thinking prepares you today for an uncertain tomorrow
- Strategic thinking reduces the margin of error
- Strategic thinking gives you influence with others
The author goes on to discuss “how to release the power of strategic thinking” in your life.
How about you? Do you specifically plan your calendar such that you assure adequate time and energy for one of the most important and critical tools you have at your disposal? That tool is strategic thinking! It is worth remembering and modeling the fact that all truly successful people… regardless of their field of endeavor… think, act and implement strategically. It is one of the critical blocks in a firm foundation for life long success and fulfillment!