Mastering the Present or Pre-empting the Future?


In the early nineties Derek Abell published a book called: Managing with Dual Strategies: Mastering the Present – Pre-empting the future. The little dash between these Dual Strategies was an emphatic “AND” not or.

However, today’s CEO’s find themselves more and more confronted with the dilemma of choosing between present and future. They end up taking today’s earnings as the main job and new growth initiatives become the responsibility of young promising managers. Donald Laurie and Bruce Harreld highlight six common mistakes CEO make for leading growth initiatives:

  1. Failing to Provide the Right Kind of Oversight – instead make earnings and growth equally important top priorities;
  2. Not Putting the Best, Most Experienced Talent in Charge – instead of recently minted MBAs put your most successful general managers in charge;
  3. Assembling the Wrong Team and Staffing Up Prematurely – instead of recruiting the available focus on needed capability;
  4. Taking the Wrong Approach to Performance Assessment – instead of corporate metrics use progress tracking of early stage ventures;
  5. Not Knowing How to Fund and Govern a Start-up – instead of forcing to follow the annual budgeting cycle use milestone achievement budgeting; and
  6. Failing to Leverage the Organization’s Core Capabilities – instead of wonderful isolation apply the organisation’s resources and capabilities in the venture.

Which is your “favourite” mistake?





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