Strategic Management – A Career for you?

Understanding Strategy Management

“What new products should we launch? How should we respond to competitor’s strategy? Which functions should we outsource?” – These are the kind of questions a business enterprise is often faced with and Strategy Management provides an answer to all of these. Strategy Management is about crafting a path towards continuous growth and profitability amidst the fiercely competitive marketplace and changing business dynamics. It involves planning, monitoring, analysis of all the decisions and actions that a firm takes to meet its objectives of achieving a sustainable competitive advantage. A Strategy is a plan of action that managers take to attain one or more organization’s goal. It is crucial for every organization small or big to identify the direction in which an organization is heading to ensure long-term success. By devising a strategy, organizations can quickly form logical decisions and set new goals to keep up with the dynamic business environment.

Emerging innovation, fast-paced technologies, and customer expectations force organizations in quick decision-making to remain successful. The strategic management process helps managers assess the organization’s current standing, table effective strategies and roll them out to finally assess the effectiveness of the implemented strategies. Strategy Manager has a pivotal role to play, as they need to stay updated on industry and competitive trends, develop forecasting models, check strategic performance, identify opportunities and threats, device feasible strategic solutions and develop creative action plans. Strategy Managers need to lay out the vision and mission of the firm that aligns the related resources of the firm towards the desired result. He has the responsibility of examining and defining the organization culture, the competencies of employees, and the organizational structure which are some important influencers in attaining the organization’s stated goals.

MBA Major in Strategy Management

Strategy Management is a well-developed discipline taught at a majority of top business schools. Strategic management course is deeply rooted in the fundamentals of competitive edge, with the underlying assumption of the careful analysis of market and of the firm’s position. The course delves into the sources of incoming profits despite the competitive pressures. It trains students to look at the organization and industry in totality and then analyzing how widespread the effect of a strategic decision would be.

MBA grads develop a mastery on multiple analytical tools and the ability to use these to perform in-depth analysis of industries and competitors, predict competitor behavior, and analyze how firms can develop and sustain competitive advantage over time. One of the important components taught in the course is risk management which is a subset of Strategy Management. Emphasis is laid on striking a balance between opportunities and risk associated with the dynamic and unpredictable nature of the industry. Students master the art of generating superior value for customers by learning to design an optimum level of the product mix and business activities.

Some important concepts in strategic management include SWOT analysis, Environmental Scanning, BCG Matrix, Competitor Analysis, Porter’s Five Forces Model, Strategic Leadership, Corporate Governance, Business ethics etc. Some of the topics found in this Major’s Curriculum are –

Corporate Strategy
Game Theory
Mastering Strategy Execution
Strategy and Technology
Good Strategies in Flawed Markets
Reimagining Capitalism

Top B-Schools in Strategy Management

Harvard Business School
The Wharton School,
Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business
The Kellogg School of Management
University of Michigan–Ann Arbor (Ross)
Dartmouth College (Tuck)
University of Virginia (Darden)

Job titles you can expect after Majoring in Strategic Management –

Strategic Project Manager
Strategic Planning Manager
Strategic Outsourcing Consultant
Management Consultant
Strategic Cost Analyst
Competitive Intelligence Analyst

Some of the prospective employers are –

Honeywell
Nike
PWC
Rogers Communication
Accenture
Bain and Company
KPMG

The average median pay of a Strategic Planning Manager was $135, 994 as of July 2018. Thriving in today’s fast-paced business environment is impossible without strategic management, as it helps organizations to identify and cash-in on their core competencies. Strategic management is an important tool as it facilitates a larger market share by understanding its marketplace strength and identifying areas for improvement. As per the Bureau of Labor Statistics, top executives, those working in strategic business management roles should experience job growth of 6% throughout the 2016-2026 periods. The industry needs MBA professionals with a strong grounding in strategy to drive the businesses forward in new directions and compete in the global environment.

Resources –

Association for Strategic Planning – https://www.strategyassociation.org/
Strategic Management Society – https://strategicmanagement.net/
Association of Internal Management Consultants – https://aimc.org/
Academy of Management – aom.org/