A company’s strategy is management’s game plan for how to grow the business, how to attract and please customers, how to compete successfully, how to conduct operations, and how to achieve targeted objectives. Normally, companies have a wide degree of strategic freedom in choosing the “hows” of strategy. They can compete in a single industry or they can diversify broadly or narrowly. Markets are usually diverse enough to offer competitors sufficient latitude to avoid look-alike strategies. At companies’ intent on gaining sales and market share at the expense of competitors, managers lean toward most offensive strategies while conservative risk-avoiding companies prefer a sound defense to an aggressive offense.
There is no shortage of opportunity to fashion a strategy that tightly fits a company’s own particular situation and that is discernibly different from the strategies of rivals. Typically, a company’s strategic choices are based partly on trial-and-error organizational learning about what has worked and what has not, partly on management’s appetite for risk taking, and partly on managerial analysis and strategic thinking about how to best proceed, given all the prevailing circumstances.
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