Setting Your Organization on a Trajectory to an Improved Future”

The authors’ praxis for exploring a default strategy is well argued and clearly presented, with a vital recognition of organizational realities. -Michael Earl, University of Oxford

Why are some companies more successful than others? Why do once-great companies like Pan Am and Blockbuster no longer exist? Why are companies like Blackberry and Kodak considered a mere shadow of their former selves, while others such as Apple and Amazon continuously evolve and prosper?

In “Beyond Default,” (LID Publishing: http://lidpublishing.com/) strategy consultants David Trafford and Peter Boggis argue that while management fads can undoubtedly bring some benefit, they rarely deliver the silver bullet that their advocates promised. Rather, Trafford and Boggis argue a more fundamental approach is required, one that acknowledges that all organizations, whether they are large corporations, not-for-profit enterprises, family businesses, countries, or societies, are on a trajectory to a future—their “default future”—the place they will end up if they take no action other than that currently planned. If the default future is an acceptable future state (which is rarely the case), then no further action is needed. If, however, the default future is deemed unacceptable (which is usually the case), then action needs to be taken to change the trajectory to an improved future.

Drawing upon decades of experience as practicing consultants and trusted advisors for companies across a range of industries and countries, Trafford and Boggis explain why developing and executing strategy remains such a challenge for most organizations. They don’t presume to tell you what your strategy should be, but they do know what questions need to be asked and what conditions need to be put…

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