A few years back, I was leading a project, and I thought I had it all figured out. I mean, I was the boss, right? I knew what I was doing. But then, one day, as I was sitting in my office with the door closed, a coworker knocked and asked if she could run an idea by me. I almost dismissed her, but something told me to hear her out. What she suggested was so groundbreaking that it completely changed the direction of the project – and ultimately led to its success. If I hadn’t opened my door, both literally and figuratively, I would have missed out on that incredible idea. And that got me thinking: how many other times have I missed out on great ideas because I was too afraid to collaborate?

It’s no secret that we’re living in the age of the internet, where collaboration and connectivity are easier than ever before. But in the world of leadership and strategy-making, it seems that many executives are still stuck in the dark ages. They cling to traditional models that don’t take advantage of the potential for innovative ideas that the internet makes possible. And let me tell you, that’s a huge freaking mistake.

The importance of embracing collaboration in this day and age cannot be overstated. I mean, think about it: we have access to an unprecedented wealth of knowledge and ideas at our fingertips. Why wouldn’t we want to tap into that? The problem is, many leaders are afraid to do so. They worry that if they open up their strategy-making process to others, they’ll muddle decision-making or expose their own ignorance. But here’s the thing: collaboration isn’t a sign of weakness or incompetence; it’s a sign of strength and adaptability.

I’ve learned firsthand that when you’re willing to listen to others and entertain new ideas, you’re opening yourself up to an incredible world of possibilities. It doesn’t matter if you’re the CEO of a multinational corporation or the leader of a small team – collaboration can help you grow and thrive in ways you never thought possible.

So, as we continue to navigate this interconnected world, I urge you to leave your fear of collaboration behind. Instead, embrace the opportunities that the internet age offers for sourcing innovative ideas, building stronger teams, and creating winning strategies. Don’t be that leader who misses out on greatness because they were too afraid to ask for help or entertain a different perspective. In the immortal words of the Beatles, “We can work it out.” And with collaboration, we most certainly can.

The Narrow View of Strategy Making

I’ve gotta be honest with you, my journey to embracing collaboration wasn’t a walk in the park. I had my fair share of moments where I stubbornly stuck to my own ideas, convinced that my way was the best way. But then, something happened that made me realize how my narrow mindset was holding me back. And it’s a story I’m more than happy to share because I believe it illustrates just how powerful a shift in perspective can be.

Picture this: I was leading a team, and we were in the midst of developing a new strategy. I was certain that my ideas were top-notch and would lead us to success. But then, one day, I overheard a couple of my team members discussing a different approach – one that I hadn’t even considered. At first, I was defensive, thinking, “How dare they question my brilliant strategy?” But the more I listened, the more I realized that their idea had merit. And that’s when it hit me like a ton of bricks: my own stubbornness and narrow-mindedness were getting in the way of our success.

You see, many executives have this fear that opening up their strategy-making process to others will somehow muddle decision-making. They worry that too many cooks in the kitchen will spoil the broth, so to speak. But what they fail to realize is that collaboration doesn’t have to be messy or chaotic. In fact, when done right, it can lead to better decision-making and more innovative strategies.

Now, I know there’s this misconception out there that collaboration is a sign of weakness or ignorance – that asking for help or input means you don’t know what you’re doing. But let me tell you something: that’s complete and utter bullshit. There’s no shame in admitting that you don’t have all the answers, and there’s certainly no shame in seeking out the wisdom of others. I mean, if we’re being honest here, nobody knows everything, right? So why pretend like we do?

The truth is, collaboration is a sign of strength, not weakness. It shows that you’re open to new ideas and perspectives, that you’re adaptable and willing to learn. It also sends a powerful message to your team, letting them know that their opinions and expertise are valued. And believe me, that’s something that can have a profound impact on morale and productivity.

So, for all the leaders out there who are still clinging to the narrow view of strategy-making, let me offer a piece of advice: don’t be afraid to embrace collaboration. Not only will it lead to better decision-making and more innovative strategies, but it will also create an environment where your team feels heard and respected.

I know it’s not easy to change, and I know that stepping outside of your comfort zone can be scary as hell. But trust me when I say that the benefits of collaboration far outweigh the risks. And who knows? You might just find that the next game-changing idea is waiting for you, right there in the minds of your team members. So go ahead, open up your strategy-making process, and watch as your organization soars to new heights.

Identifying Gaps in the Strategy-Making Process

Alright, folks, let’s dive into one of the most critical aspects of strategy-making: identifying gaps. You see, no matter how brilliant your plan might be, there’s always room for improvement. And the first step towards making your strategy even better is to figure out where it’s lacking.

Think of it like this: your strategy-making process is a map, and your goal is to find the areas where there are no ideas – or, as I like to call them, the “no-idea zones.” Now, I know that sounds like some kind of dystopian wasteland where creativity goes to die, but bear with me here. The point is to pinpoint the parts of your process that could use a little extra oomph, and then figure out how to fill in those blanks with fresh, innovative ideas.

One way to do this is by taking a step back and looking at your strategy from a different perspective. You know, like when you squint at one of those Magic Eye pictures and suddenly see the hidden image? Yeah, it’s kind of like that. The idea is to approach your strategy from a different angle, in hopes of uncovering areas where you might be lacking information or insight.

Now, speaking of information, let’s talk about the importance of information-gathering in the strategy-making process. Because, let’s face it, you can’t come up with a killer strategy if you don’t have all the facts, right? I mean, sure, you might get lucky and stumble upon a great idea by pure chance, but let’s be real: that’s not a sustainable way to do business.

Information-gathering is all about being proactive – seeking out the knowledge and insights you need to make informed decisions. It’s about asking questions, conducting research, and engaging in conversations with others (yes, that includes collaborating!). It’s about taking the time to truly understand your market, your competition, and your customers, so that you can develop a strategy that’s not only innovative but also effective.

Now, I know what you’re thinking: “But that sounds like so much work!” And you’re not wrong. Information-gathering can be time-consuming and, at times, downright exhausting. But you know what’s even more exhausting? Spinning your wheels and getting nowhere because you didn’t bother to do your homework. So, trust me when I say that the effort you put into gathering information will pay off in spades when it comes time to develop your strategy.

So, to recap: if you want to create a truly kickass strategy, you need to start by identifying the gaps in your process. Map out your strategy-making process, find those pesky no-idea zones, and then do everything in your power to fill them in with innovative ideas and insights. And don’t forget to embrace the power of collaboration – because, as I’ve said before, two (or more) heads are always better than one.

Remember, folks, strategy-making isn’t a one-and-done deal. It’s an ongoing process that requires constant evaluation, adaptation, and – you guessed it – collaboration. So get out there, gather information, and start filling in those gaps. Your strategy – and your business – will be all the better for it.

Treating Strategy-Making as an Exercise in Innovation

Let me tell you a little story about how a casual conversation over coffee turned into a game-changing idea for my business. I was chatting with a colleague about our respective companies, and they mentioned an approach they’d tried with their team that led to a major breakthrough. It wasn’t something I’d ever considered before, but it got me thinking. And you know what? When I took that idea back to my team, it sparked a whole new level of innovation in our strategy-making process.

The moral of the story? Treating strategy-making as an exercise in innovation can lead to some pretty incredible results. It’s all about embracing the role of exploration and discovery in the process, and being willing to challenge the status quo. After all, if you’re just doing the same old thing over and over, you’re not innovating – you’re stagnating.

Now, I know what some of you are thinking: “But I’m the CEO! I’m supposed to have all the answers, right?” Well, yeah, to some extent. But let’s be real: nobody knows everything. And there’s a huge difference between being a stubborn, traditional CEO who clings to outdated ideas and methods, and an innovative CEO who’s open to exploring new possibilities and learning from others.

Challenging stereotypes about what it means to be a leader is a crucial part of fostering innovation in strategy-making. It’s time to ditch the idea that you need to have all the answers and be some kind of infallible oracle. Instead, embrace the idea that you can learn just as much from your team as they can learn from you, and that collaboration is the key to unlocking your company’s full potential.

So, how do you start treating strategy-making as an exercise in innovation? For starters, create an environment where exploration and discovery are not only encouraged, but celebrated. Foster a culture where your team feels comfortable sharing their ideas, no matter how wild or unconventional they might seem. You never know – that crazy idea from your intern might just be the spark that ignites a whole new way of thinking about your business strategy.

Next, make a conscious effort to challenge your own assumptions and biases. As a leader, it’s all too easy to get stuck in your own way of thinking and dismiss new ideas out of hand. But if you want to foster innovation in your strategy-making process, you need to be open to considering different perspectives and embracing the idea that there might be a better way of doing things.

Finally, never underestimate the power of collaboration. As I mentioned earlier, some of the best ideas come from casual conversations with colleagues, friends, or even complete strangers. So, make an effort to engage with others and listen to their ideas, experiences, and insights. You just might find that the key to unlocking your company’s next big breakthrough has been hiding in plain sight all along.

Remember, folks: treating strategy-making as an exercise in innovation isn’t just a buzzword or a trendy concept. It’s a mindset – a way of approaching your business that can lead to real, tangible results. So, don’t be afraid to challenge the status quo, embrace collaboration, and explore new possibilities. The future of your company depends on it.

Embracing the Volume and Complexity of Ideas

Alright, folks, let’s talk about embracing the volume and complexity of ideas when it comes to crafting your company’s strategy. I know, I know – it can be downright terrifying to face a tidal wave of suggestions and input, especially when you’re the one who’s supposed to make sense of it all. But trust me when I say that there’s power in having a diverse pool of ideas to draw from.

Let me share a little story with you. Once upon a time, I was the kind of leader who believed that too many ideas would just muddy the waters and make it impossible to settle on a clear direction. But one day, I found myself in a brainstorming session with my team, and I’ll be damned if it wasn’t one of the most eye-opening experiences of my career. The sheer volume and variety of ideas that flowed from that meeting blew me away, and it completely changed my perspective on the value of embracing complexity.

You see, the benefits of having a diverse pool of ideas are many. For one, it encourages creativity and innovation, as people are more likely to think outside the box when they’re surrounded by a range of perspectives. Plus, the more ideas you have to work with, the greater your chances of finding that one game-changing concept that can propel your business forward.

Now, don’t get me wrong – I’m not saying you should just blindly accept every single idea that comes your way. That would be chaos. But what I am saying is that there’s value in considering a wide array of options, even if some of them seem a little out there at first glance.

Contrast that with the alternative: limiting your options by dismissing unconventional or unfamiliar ideas. Sure, it might feel safer and more manageable, but it also stifles creativity and innovation. It’s like trying to pick the perfect outfit from a closet full of the same old clothes – eventually, you’re just going to get bored and frustrated with your lack of choices.

So, how do you strike the right balance between embracing the volume and complexity of ideas and maintaining some semblance of order in your strategy-making process? It’s all about being selective and intentional in your approach. Don’t be afraid to sift through the noise to find the gems – those brilliant, game-changing ideas that can set your company apart from the competition.

One way to do this is by fostering a culture of open communication and collaboration. Encourage your team members to share their thoughts and ideas, no matter how unconventional they might seem. And when you’re faced with a vast array of options, use your judgment and experience to determine which ideas have the most potential and are worth exploring further.

Ultimately, embracing the volume and complexity of ideas is about having the courage to step outside your comfort zone and entertain new possibilities. It’s about recognizing that there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to strategy-making, and that the best solutions often come from the most unexpected places.

So, don’t be afraid to dive headfirst into that swirling whirlpool of ideas. Just remember to keep your eyes open for those hidden gems, and to trust in your own ability to navigate the chaos. You never know – you might just stumble upon the next big thing for your business.


So, there you have it, folks. We’ve been on quite a journey together, haven’t we? From addressing our fears of collaboration and challenging the narrow mindset, to exploring the wild world of innovation and embracing the sheer volume and complexity of ideas – it’s been one hell of a ride.

And if there’s one thing I want you to take away from all this, it’s the importance of collaboration and embracing new ideas in your strategy-making process. I mean, come on – it’s the 21st century, people! The internet has given us the tools to connect and share ideas like never before, so why not take advantage of that?

Look, I get it – stepping outside your comfort zone can be scary. But that’s where the magic happens, my friends. That’s where you’ll find those game-changing ideas that can set your business apart from the competition and propel it to new heights.

So, I encourage you, dear leaders, to take that leap of faith. Embrace collaboration, foster open communication, and be willing to entertain unconventional ideas. Because in the end, it’s not about having all the answers – it’s about being willing to listen, learn, and adapt.

Remember, we’re all in this together. Nobody has a monopoly on good ideas, and the more perspectives and insights we can bring to the table, the better equipped we’ll be to tackle the challenges that come our way. So, let’s break down those barriers and work together to create strategies that can truly make a difference.

And now, for my pièce de résistance – the humorous closing, as promised. Listen up, my friends: Don’t be a strategy dinosaur, stubbornly clinging to the old ways and refusing to evolve. Instead, embrace the power of collaboration and innovation. Be the kind of leader who’s always seeking out new ideas, perspectives, and opportunities for growth.

In the words of the great philosopher Ferris Bueller, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” So, don’t let your business get left behind in the dust. Be bold, be brave, and dare to step outside your comfort zone. The future of your company depends on it.

About the Author: Geoffrey Byers
Geoffrey is one of the world's foremost Designers. He is also a Serial Entrepreneur, Author, Speaker, and Mad Scientist. Hypothesis-Driven experimentation is his love language.