Five essential questions for strategic management

The organization on the couch. Thus we can define the essence of the self-assessment process created by Peter Drucker, considered the father of modern management. The author asked five essential questions for a good diagnosis. They make up the book The Five Essential Questions You Should Always Ask About Your Company [¹].

“The answers are important. You need them to promote actions. But the most important thing is to ask these questions. ” – Peter Drucker

Drucker’s five questions help both confirm and redefine the organization’s mission, as well as establish new long-range goals. Therefore, this organizational self-assessment leads to new horizons. It is also worth noting that, in addition to the couch metaphor, Drucker’s family was close to Sigmund Freud [²].

Without further ado. Discover Drucker’s five questions for good strategic management:

1 – What is our mission?

According to Drucker, every mission statement should reflect three things: opportunities, skills and commitment. With this, it must provide a complete understanding of the real reason for the organization’s existence.

In his words:

“The mission statement is short and well-focused. It must fit in a T-shirt. The mission says why you do what you do, not the means by which you do it. ”

2 – Who is our customer?

Identify who your primary customer is. This will serve to establish the focus of actions on the right audience. For Drucker, answering this question “provides the basis for determining what customers value, defining their results and developing the plan”.

As the market is dynamic, this question will periodically require further reflection. In this sense, the author asks: “How will our customers change?”

Remember to continually learn from your customers. They are not static.

3 – What does the customer value?

According to Drucker, this is the most important question of the five questions. However, it is also the one that companies most often fail to ask themselves. In part, this is explained by the fact that only the customers themselves can answer what satisfies their needs, desires and aspirations.

Don’t try to guess the target audience’s response. Try cross-checking information from multiple sources with customer feedback. From this data, your organization will be able to create more attractive and profitable services and products.

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4 – What are our results?

This question requires two measures as an answer: quantitative and qualitative.

Qualitative measures concern the scope and depth of the changes promoted by the organization’s products. Quantitative measures seek patterns of response, of an objective nature, to serve in assessing the use of resources.

“Progress and achievement can be seen in qualitative and quantitative terms. These two types of measures are intertwined – they clarify each other – and both are needed to shed light on how and to what extent lives are being changed ”

In addition to identifying your results, it is worth remembering that you need to know how to evaluate them. Here are 5 tips for an efficient evaluation of results.

5 – What is our plan?

The answers to the previous four questions should lead you to an advanced understanding of the organization. This self-assessment process will allow the establishment of new goals and strategic actions.

For Drucker, a plan is the concise sum of the organization’s purpose and future direction. It brings together mission, visio

n, goals, objectives, action measures, budget and evaluation.

If you cannot answer that question, you will not know where you are going or even how to get there.

Peter Drucker’s couch will help you get to the heart of your business. The answers to the five questions provide an important roadmap for building an effective enterprise, implementing good strategic management and achieving positive results.

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Sources:
[¹] DRUCKER, Peter. As Cinco Perguntas Essenciais que Você Sempre Deverá Fazer Sobre Sua Empresa. Campus Elsevier: Rio de Janeiro, 2008.
[²] WARNER, S. Sigmund Freud and money. J Am Acad Psychoanal, 1989, Winter: 17(4):609-22.
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