Strategy as Practice: The particle approach to strategy

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What is strategy as practice?

Strategy as practice relates to research looking at how to develop and implement strategy. It is a particularly practical side of strategy research examining the actual activities involved n strategy formation and implementation. Rather than focus on aspects associated with successful firms, the strategy as practice research orientation looks at how managers are going about the day-to-day and periodic activities associated with the strategy process – including consideration of best practices for formulating the strategy. 

The importance of strategy as practice research

Strategy as practice research is important because while strategic frameworks are an important component of analysis, the process for formulating a strategy is also important. How should firms actually develop and implement their strategy? What are the best approaches for involving others and getting buy-in? How does the strategy typically evolve as the firm implements its strategy? All of these are important topics, typically requiring qualitative research examining the activities undertaken by specific firms, with a view of gaining insight into the formation and implementation activities that can inform the process at other firms.

Thus, while a lot of strategy research is concerned with what to focus on, the strategy as practice research is concerned with how to focus on it – how to go about actually formulating the strategy. This has a particularly practical component to is – helping to inform how managers should go about the practice task of determining how to compete.

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