Strategy Survival Guide

Source Description

“The [British] Prime Minister's Strategy Unit is part of the Cabinet Office. It was formed to provide a clear focus for strategic thinking and policy analysis at the heart of government. […]
The Strategy Unit has four main roles:

The Unit's Approach to Strategy Development
The Unit has a project based approach to developing strategy. […] Teams are tailored to the needs of each project. Most are small multi-disciplinary teams that bring together civil servants and a wide range of people from outside government, including those responsible for implementation and delivery.
Based on the belief that rigorous analysis is an essential foundation for strategy development, the unit fosters an evidence-based approach. It also promotes an open approach believing that involving people early on greatly increases the prospects of sustainable change.

The Strategic Capability Team
Established in 2003, the Strategic Capability Team [is] dedicated to fulfilling the Strategy Unit's remit to work with departments to promote strategic thinking and improve policy making. In addition to publishing this guide and promoting strategy best practice through coaching, training and networks, the team are focused on working with departments to help them assess and improve their ability to create implementable strategy and meet their most important strategic challenges. Please contact directly for further information.”

Web Site

The Strategy Unit’s web site provides a comprehensive Strategy Survival Guide to a project-based approach to strategy development. The reader is recommended to visit and to explore the site directly. The following listing serves only as an appetiser and reflects the content on the original site at the time of writing (Feb 2006).
Home About Us Introducing Strategy How to Use the Guide Contact Us & Registration Downloads Access Keys External Links Terms and Conditions

Strategy Development

Justification & Set Up

Task: Justifying the project
Task: Clarifying the issues
Task: Planning the project
Task: Setting up the team
Output: Project proposal & plan
Management issues
Questions to ask

Research & Analysis
Task: Gathering knowledge
Task: Analysing knowledge
Task: Reviewing organisational capacity
Output: Interim analytical report
Management issues
Questions to ask

Strategic Direction Setting
Task: Developing guiding principles
Task: Articulating a vision
Task: Defining strategic aims and objectives
Output: Preferred strategic direction
Management issues
Questions to ask

Policy & Delivery Design
Task: Developing policy options
Task: Detailing policy options
Task: Appraising policy options
Task: Planing the roll out
Output: Final report & delivery plan
Management issues
Questions to ask

Strategy Skills

Managing People and the Project
Recruiting a team
Building a team
Working as a team
Encouraging creativity
Giving & receiving feedback
Developing the plan
Structuring the work
Setting milestones
Managing risks
Defining accountability
Evaluating the project

Managing Stakeholders and Communications
Identifying key stakeholders and their issues
Effectively engaging with stakeholders template
Developing a stakeholder engagement plan template
Drawing up a communications plan
Communication with the media
Evaluating communications
Preparing presentations
Structuring the Thinking
Issue trees template
First principles thinking
Systems thinking
Creativity techniques

Building an Evidence Base
Data types & sources
Interviews & focus groups
Market analysis
Organisational analysis template
International comparisons
Scenario development
Counterfactual analysis

Appraising Options
Multi-criteria analysis
Cost-benefit & cost-effectiveness analysis
Rationale for government intervention

Planning Delivery
Change management
Institutional change
Designing an implementation plan

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