Will KSA CEO’s Strategize the Transformation or Transform the Strategy or Both?

CEO’s in the GCC countries especially Saudi Arabia are facing heaps of challenges ranging in level  from as macro as unstable geopolitics of the region to as micro as keeping teams motivated and focused. The new market order in the making as a result of the Saudi Vision 2030 lead by HRH Mohammed Bin Salman MBS is changing the rules of the game. And for the CEO’s to keep the ship afloat they will need to answer a very fundamental question “ what strategy should we take”. The business as usual business strategy cannot be the cure of all illnesses. A new way of strategic thinking has to be followed.

Digital Transformation

I am not talking about the process of how to develop a strategy. The process will be more or less the same. However, the purpose of the strategy is what needs to be different. The new strategy has to achieve two goals; first, it has to articulate what new business model is needed and therefore making it clear for everyone that change is the new strategy hence Strategizing Transformation.

After making the goals of transformation clear and well defined to everyone, the new business strategy will be the roadmap  towards achieving that goal. Hence it will transform the business into a new business model that can adopt to the new rules of the game and be able to face the set of the new challenges.  

Why should that be different than business as usual strategies. Isn’t the goal of every strategy should be to lay down the roadmap to achieve business goals. What is different here is the strategy itself which will be a new bread of business strategies. In the old days we used to have a business strategy that is enabled by number of initiatives in key domains of the business one of which is the IT strategy. Therefore , the IT strategy used to be built around a predefined set of business goals and business assumptions which drives the development of the IT strategy.

With the recent developments in Digital Transformation, IT strategy is not anymore a support strategy. It leaped frog other business domains and took the lead to be the main business driver. Recent penetration of social networks among client base, new offerings in cloud computing, latest developments in Data science and Big Data, and new technological advancement in the field of Internet Of Things IOT. All of these tectonic changes will influence  the strategic thinking process in a way that will result in a business strategy that is build hand in hand with IT strategy. This is what i meant by Transforming the Strategy.

Therefore, the business model will change to seize the new opportunities made available due to Digital Transformation trends. The new business model result in  restructuring the value chain and revamp the company SOP’s. It will also realign touch points with external business partners both vendors and customers. The decision making process will dramatically change from a process that relies on historical data of lagging indicators to make a decision which is mainly a reactive process to a process that depends on statistical models that can predict future trends in market demand and customer behavior . With Big Data and BI tools decision making will depend mainly on leading indicators more than lagging ones. This is a new paradigm shit which will be discussed in more details in subsequent posts.  

Doing so will fundamentally Transform the Strategy as well as Strategizing the Transformation. 

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