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Strategy



Definition

Strategy

The art or science of the planning and conduct of a war. The mode of executing tactics.

Tactics

The art and science of the detailed direction and control of movement or manoeuvre to achieve an aim or task.

Once you have defined the Problem Statement you must consider how you will go about providing a solution to it.
How you provide the solution can be recorded in the mission statement.

Identifying the differing strategies and evaluating them can be carried out using a brain storm technique.
Using this technique you can consider the following.

Internal expectations

You will need to assess internal opinion of, for example, managers, finance, quality control other staff members.

External expectations

These would be local community, stakeholders (for example, suppliers), customers, creditors, technology advances, legal developments etc.
That is anything external to the immediate environment of the project which may have an influence.

Database

Do not forget the value of data that may already exist.
Historical or current data may come from unrelated projects.
Information may be derived from future forecasts.

Having an experienced project management team will be a great help in unearthing potentially useful information.

Having considered the above the project team will be in a better position to put forward one or more project strategies.
Ideally, a minimum number of strategies will be presented to senior management.
In the case of PRINCE2® [see ‘The Complete Project Management plus PRINCE2’] this would be the Project Board.

SWOT analysis

S.W.O.T. stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats.

The list of strategies can be assessed using the SWOT technique to identify where the team can consolidate strengths, improve weaknesses, take advantage of opportunities and minimise threats.
This analysis may eliminate some strategies and reinforce others.

Having considered all of these the team should now be in a position to identify appropriate strategies, eliminate those that are unsuitable and agree the strategy.

When drawing up a strategy and finalising a schedule remember that what may work in one environment may fail in another.
The overall plan should not reflect a ‘glory or bust’ approach.
If the project is long break it down into parts that will show steady gains. This will improve morale.

Further detail in carrying out a SWOT analysis is described in the file ‘worked example and glossary.doc’ in the product package.

PRINCE2® is a Registered Trade Mark of the Office of Government Commerce in the United Kingdom and other countries.

Non - PRINCE2 information