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Business Strategy and Strategic Management


The complex business environment in which organisations operate requires more awareness from managers on how to formulate, implement and evaluate strategic plans. Managers need to understand the influences on their decision making processes when developing a strategy for growth.

The purpose of this module is to introduce practitioners and academics to essential elements of strategic thinking, and the strategic management process.

Consideration will be given to both traditional and contemporary views of strategic thinking, from Michael Porter's structuralist competitive strategy, through W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne's Blue Ocean reconstructionist strategy, to Henry Mintzberg's sometimes contrarian views in "Strategy Safari."

The important work of John Boyd will be considered, including the OODA Loop, and his seminal strategy paper "Destruction and Creation".


On completion of this module, participants will be able to:

  • Evaluate different strategies in a complex global environment, using the internet based Strategy Experience Simulation.
  • Understand the nature and content of business strategy and the strategic planning and management process;
  • Understand some of the tools and techniques used to formulate strategy;
  • Identify and quantify the external and internal factors that affect a business;
  • Review and understand how to recognise and develop sources of competitive advantage, and value innovation.


  • Schools of thought in strategic management.
  • The competitive strategy formulation process.
  • Analysis of the external and internal business environment.
  • The positioning process.
  • Planning systems: Top-down or bottom up?
  • Alternative approaches to strategic thinking and decision making.
  • Emergent strategies, logical incrementalism and behavioural approaches.
  • Blue Ocean strategy, value innovation and the strategy canvas.
  • Market entry strategies - an introduction.
  • Business planning for long-term growth.
  • Internet based simulation.