How to get sales results that link to strategy? That the question Frank V. Cespedes explores in his recently published book Aligning Strategy and Sales: The Choices, Systems, and Behaviors that Drive Effective Selling. Thanks to his many years of experience as a business manager, consultant, and Harvard Business School professor, he can tell: „for most firms, the largest, most difficult, and most expensive part of strategy implementation is aligning sales and go-to-market efforts with the company's espoused strategies and goals.“ Poor alignment of strategy and sales creates direct and opportunity costs having a negative impact on the company's growth potential.

On May 8th 2014, the time had come again: Strategy experts from all over German headed to Stuttgart to join the traditional Annual Conference for Strategic Management which was hosted by Horváth & Partners for already the 14th time. As in the previous two years, SOLYP served again as event partner. The motto of the one-day event was: “Making Strategy Tangible - Participation, Communication, and Commitment as Key to Successful Strategy Work"

Last week, more than two hundred strategy professionals from around the world gathered at the Chief Strategy Office Summit in London to discuss current challenges in strategy work and share their experiences and best practices. Both the list of speakers and the list of participants were rather impressive. Among the participants were many renowned global companies, such as Airbus, BP, Pfizer, Sony, Hewlett Packard, Rolls-Royce, PepsiCo, Statoil, Aviva, and TUI Travel. Speakers included the chief strategists of Siemens, Philips, GE, Skype, Nokia, Twitter, and Sky News, among others. As a specialist for the digitization of strategic management processes, SOLYP took part in the event as well.

Michael E. Porter has faced a lot of criticism lately. First, Rita Gunther McGrath overthrew his concept of sustainable competitive advantage in her well-received book The End of Competitive Advantage. And now the recently published Harvard Business Review article Strategy: The Uniqueness Challenge questions his differentiation theory, at least partially. According to Porter, differentiation is one of the three basic types of competitive strategy, and, in many cases, probably the most promising. Todd Zenger, Professor of Business Strategy at Washington University in St. Louis’s Olin Business School and author of the HBR article, however, is convinced that the financial markets systematically undervalue companies with unique and complex strategies – even though these strategies are often the most valuable.

The merger of the international strategy consulting firm Booz & Company with PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), one of the world’s Big Four audit firms, which was announced at the end of October, has taken another important hurdle: On December 23rd, 2013 “Booz & Company’s global partners have voted overwhelmingly to approve a combination with PwC,” the organization stated in a press release. Provided the supervisory authorities give green light, the deal will be closed by the end of March. Until then, the two organizations will continue operating separately.