Key Elements of Thinking Strategically

Document Type: Original Research

Authors

1 Faculty of Management, University of Tehran, Iran

2 Faculty of Management, Allameh Tabataba'i University, Iran

Abstract

Strategic thinking is one of the most important capabilities which managers of today’s organizations must possess. Holding companies, due to the kind of problems that they experience, are in serious need of managers capable of strategic thinking. The present research has been conducted with the aim of identifying the individual dimensions of strategic thinking in holding companies’ managers in Iran. In this regard, a number of managers who have had the experience of being members of the board of directors or working as CEOs of these firms have been asked to express their opinions about strategic thinking and their views have been analyzed using fuzzy cognitive maps. Results suggest that having vision, ability to analyze, having systems thinking, ability to question, creativity, ability to make synergy and ability to create advantage are the main elements of strategic thinking in successful managers of holding companies. In addition, the relationships among these variables have been explained.

Keywords


Axelrod, R. (1976). Structure of decision: The Cognitive Maps of political elites. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
Bonn, I. (2001). Developing strategic thinking as a core competency. Management Decision, 39, 63-71.
Bonn, I. (2005). Improving strategic thinking: A multilevel approach. Leadership & Organizational Development Journal, 26, 336-354.
Casey, A., & Goldman, E. (2010). Enhancing the ability to think strategically: A learning model. Management Learning, 41, 167-185.
Checkland P, Haynes MG. (1994). Varieties of systems thinking: The case of soft systems methodology. System Dynamics Review 10: 189–197.
Dunbar, K., &Fugelsang, J. (2005). Scientific thinking and reasoning. In K. J. Holyoak& R. G. Morrison (Eds.), The Cambridge handbook of thinking and reasoning (pp. 705–725). Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
Gallimore, K. (2010). Developing a Tentative Framework for Strategic Thinking. British Academy of Management Conference. Sheffield.
Glaser, E. M. (1941). An experiment in the development of critical thinking. New York: Columbia University Teachers College.
Graetz, F. (2002) Strategic thinking versus strategic planning: towards understanding the complementarities. Management Decision 40(5/6): 456–63.
Heracleous, L. (1998). Strategic thinking or strategic planning. Long Range Planning, 31(3), 481.
Liedtka, J. (1998). Strategic Thinking; Can It Be Taught? Long Range Planning, 31, pp. 120–129.
Linkow, P. (1999). What gifted strategic thinkers do? Training & Development 53(7): 34-37.
Mintzberg, H. (1994). The fall and rise of strategic planning. Harvard Business Review, 72(January/February): 107-114.
Mintzberg, H., (1987). The strategy concept I: five Ps for strategy, California Management Review, 30, pp. 11-23.
Monnavarian, A., Farmani, G., and Yajam, H., (2011). Strategic thinking in Benetton. Business Strategy Series, 12(2), 63-72.
Napier N.K., Albert M.S., (1990). East Asian and American perspectives On Thinking Strategically: The Leopard and His Spots. Asia Pacific Journal of Human Resources. 28: 40-50.
O'Shannassy, T. (2003). Modern strategic management: Balancing strategic thinking and strategic planning for internal and external stakeholders." Singapore Management Review 25(1): 53-68.
Porter, M. E. (1987). The state of strategic thinking. The Economist (23 May): 21-28.
Rodriguez-Repiso, L. (2005). Indicators of Success for IT Projects. Case Study. MSc Systems Engineering with IT Applications. Cardiff University.
Rodriguez-Repiso, L., Setchi, R. &Salmeron, J.L. (2007). Modelling IT Projects success with Fuzzy Cognitive Maps. Expert Systems with Applications 32 (2) 543-559.
Schneider M., Shnaider E., Kandel A., and Chew G. (1998). Automatic Construction of FCMs. Fuzzy Sets and Systems 93, pp. 161-172.