About Us|Contact Us|Register|Login


Strategic Management Glossary

Strategic management glossary of terms.

This is a comprehensive curated list of Strategic Management Glossary for the enefit of management students, professionals and business bloggers.

Action Plan
The action plan lists the specific actions that must be taken, by whom and by when in order to achieve an overall goal or implement a strategy. Some people include the costs of each action in the action plans, resulting in budget information being included in the action plans, as well. Action plans together are sometimes referred to as the Implementation Plan.

When one company, the acquirer, purchases and absorbs the operations of another, the acquired.

Alignment model of strategic planning
Focuses especially on aligning internal operations to most effectively and efficiently work toward the mission of the organization.

Activity Ratios

Inventory turnover and average collection period measure how effectively a firm is using its resources.


A way to evaluate strategies; to determine if a particular strategy creates or extends a firm’s competitive superiority in a selected area of activity.

Aggressive Quadrant

In a SPACE matrix analysis, when the firm’s directional vector points in the upper-right quadrant, the firm should pursue aggressive strategies.

Annual Objectives

Short-term milestones that organizations must achieve


Whether an individual or team of individuals within an organization has the freedom to develop an entrepreneurial idea and then see it through to completion.

Love yourself wellness planner 2023

Balanced Scorecard
A framework for categorising your strategy into four interdependent balanced areas- financial, customer, internal business process, and employee learning & growth.


Base level of previous or current performance that can be used to set improvement goals and provide a basis for assessing future progress.

Bench marking

A process of compiling and comparing data on business performance of your organization with that of competitors or industry averages to understand where you sit in comparison, identify best practices, and measure progress.


A description of the monetary amount that will be allocated to a given project or action.

Business Plan

A formal guide outlining your business goals and plans to achieve the goals. It may also include background information on the organisation attempting to achieve these goals.

Board of Directors

A Board is the group of people who are legally charged to oversee the operations of a corporation, whether for-profit or nonprofit.

Board Insiders

Members of the board of directors that are generally employed inside of the organization.

Board Outsiders

Members of the board of directors that are generally employed outside of the organization.


Obtaining agreement from key stakeholders that the proposed plan is acceptable.

Business Model Canvas

The Business Model Canvas is a strategic management and lean startup template for developing new or documenting existing business models. It is a visual chart with elements describing a firm’s or product’s value proposition, infrastructure, customers, and finances.

Backward Vertical Integration

Moving back along the value chain and entering a supplier’s business.

Behavioral Control

Focuses on controlling the actions of individuals through rules and procedures.


A strategy where the firm attempts to offer a hybrid of both lower cost and differentiated products or services, combining the two basic strategies.

Blue Ocean Strategy

Creating a new, untapped market rather than competing with rivals in an existing market.

Broad Cost Leadership

A strategy that offers the lowest price in the market for that product or service.

Broad Differentiation

A strategy that offers something unique that differentiates their product or service from others.

Social media content planner 2023

Capacity Building

Capacity building is the process of creating, improving and retaining core skills, knowledge and capabilities of an organization’s people and processes.


Capital refers to the assets that are owned by an entity and are available for use. Capital is usually described in terms of money, though can be an asset owned by an organization.


The process of aligning the various KPIs, goals, and projects in an organization to the higher strategy. All actions taken should be contributing to a higher level goal or strategy.

Case study

A study containing qualitative data (such as observations and information drawn from interviews) about one subject. These studies are typically based on what is termed anecdotal evidence. A series of case studies can provide useful information that something of significance is happening that may merit further study.

Cause and Effect

The process of identifying the relationship between things or events. The purpose is to identify if one event or action caused another to occur.


Anyone whose interests are served by an organization, or who receives or uses an organization’s resources or services. Clients can be internal to an organization, for example, one department may be the client of another department, or external to the organization.


To work together sharing ideas and resources, especially in a joint intellectual effort.


A group of individuals legally empowered to transact business as one body.

Cost-benefit analysis

A management tool that involves calculating or estimating the monetary costs and potential benefits of a
proposed course of action.

Cost Leadership

Cost leadership is one of the three competitive strategies an organization may choose to focus on to gain a competitive advantage over their competitors. It requires the organisation to offer the lowest prices on
goods/services in the marketplace.

Critical success factor

The term used to describe an element that is required to achieve the business goals and vision.

Cultural competence

A set of values, behaviors, attitudes, and practices which enable people to work effectively across racial/ethnic and cultural lines.


The person(s), or organizations who use your output. Whether your customers are internal or
external to your organization, they use your output as an input to their work processes.

Customer Value Proposition

Customer Value Proposition is the intended overall value and/or benefit a customer/stakeholderwill g ain from your product or service in return for its costs, including money, time and effort; a marketing statement that summarizes the tangible and intangible value of a particular offering helping the customer to understand why they might want to buy a product or use a service.

Customer Perspective

The external customer’s point of view on an organization, and the value they place on the product/services offered by the organization.

Change Management 

The application of a structured process and set of tools for leading the people side of change to achieve a desired outcome. 

Continuous Improvement 

A mindset and a practice of constantly re-examining and improving products, services or processes.

Core Values 

Fundamental beliefs, philosophies, principles or standards that define the organization’s character. They dictate correct behavior and guide the decisions and actions of an organization’s leaders and workforce.

Competitive Positioning

Competitive positioning is about defining how you’ll “differentiate” your offering and create value for your market. It’s about carving out a spot in the competitive landscape, putting your stake in the ground, and winning mindshare in the marketplace – being known for a certain “something.

Core Competency

Any area, factor, or consideration perceived by the customer that differentiates the organization
and provides for a competitive edge over its rivals.


A process or activity that includes portions of the process or activity from two or more functions
within an organization

Conflicts of Interest

When a person could receive personal benefit from decisions they make in their official capacity.


Provide exclusive rights to the creators of original artistic works such as books, movies, songs, and screenplays.

Corporate Social Performance

Measuring the impact of a firm’s activities in corporate social responsibility.

Corporate Social Responsibility

Efforts by a firm to be socially accountable by contributing to community and/or societal goals through philanthropic, activist, or charitable activities.

Creating Shared Value (CSV)

A business model whereby society’s needs and challenges are addressed as a firm prospers achieving its mission.

Cash Cows

High market share units within slow-growing industries.

Concentration Strategy

Actions that firms use to try to compete successfully within only a single industry.

Social media holiday calendar 2023


The delta is where change occurs. It is where people stop operating in the old way, learn new ways, make mistakes, mourn the loss of the old, test the new way and integrate it into ongoing operations.


The results of systematic efforts to bring about structural, operational, and performance improvements, in a set of capabilities in order to enhance and/or increase outputs.

Double Loop Learning

In double-loop learning, feedback from management consequences is fed back to the action strategy development process and back into the governing variables that were used to develop the strategies in the first place.

Devil’s Advocacy  

A technique in which one member of a decision-making group acts as a devil’s advocate, bringing out all the considerations that might make the proposal unacceptable.

Dialectic Inquiry  

The generation of a plan (a thesis) and a counter-plan (an antithesis) that reflect plausible but conflicting courses of action.

Differentiation Strategy  

A strategy of trying to achieve a competitive advantage by creating a product that is perceived by customers as unique in some important way.


The way in which a company allocates people and resources to organizational tasks and divides them into functions and divisions so as to create value.

Distinctive Competency  

A unique, firm-specific strength that enables a company to better differentiate its products and/or achieve substantially lower costs than its rivals and thus gain a competitive advantage.


Entering into one or more industries that are distinct or different from a company’s core or original industry to find ways to use the company’s distinctive competencies to increase the value to customers of the products it offers in those industries.

Diversified company  

A company that operates in two or more industries to find ways to increase long-run profitability.

Divestment Strategy  

A strategy in which a company sells off its business assets and resources to other companies.


Selling a business unit to the highest bidder.

Driving Forces

The most dominate forces because they have the biggest influence on what kinds of changes will take place in the industry’s structure and competitive environment.

Coaching workbook to build your self confidence.

External Environment

A systematic review of current and/or emerging trends, events, situations, problems, and issues that are or might impact the organization, its operation, and/or its performance. A scan may be focused on either external or internal factors.

The conditions and forces that define a firm’s competitive position and influences its strategic options. Also called Competitive Environment.

Environmental Assessment

Environmental Assessment is a thoughtful analysis and evaluation of the strategic environment facing the organization.


The process of comparing and assessing some entity or attribute using a specific criterion (or
criteria), i.e., a norm, standard, regulation, or expectation.

Economic Risk

The potential for a country’s economic conditions and policies, property rights protections, and currency exchange rates to harm a firm’s operations within a country.

Economies of Scale

Created when the unit cost of goods and services decreases as a firm is able to produce and sell more items.

Emergent Strategy

An unplanned strategy that arises in response to unexpected opportunities and challenges.

Emerging Industry

A newly formed or restructured industry growing faster than the overall economy.

Exit Strategy

Exit strategy or exit plan is a way to transition the ownership of a company to another company (e.g. through a merger or acquisition) 

Entreprenurial Orientation

The processes, practices, and decision-making styles of organizations that act entrepreneurially.

Instagram story highlight covers


Specialized area of related activities within an organization that are grouped together in order to manage them effectively and efficiently, for example, finance, marketing, and operations.

Functional management

A level of management below general management that is in charge of a given function.


The facilitator is the person responsible to guide and support planners through the planning process.


A small position that a firm intentionally establishes within a market in which it does not yet compete.

Forward Vertical Integration

Moving further down the value chain to enter a buyer’s business.

Flat Structure  

A structure with few hierarchical levels and a relatively wide span of control.

Focus Strategy  

A strategy of serving the needs of one or a few customer groups or segments.


Forecast usually refers to a projected value for a metric. Organizations will often create a forecast that is different than their target for a given metric.

Financial Objectives

Concerned with the financial results and outcomes the management wants the organizations to receive. Ex: earnings/growth/stock price.

Functional Organization

An organizational structure along functional lines (e.g. marketing, acquisition, asset management, development, finance and accounting, etc.)

Functional Strategies

Strategies for each firm’s function or division; integrates into Grand Strategy and ties to Long-Term Objectives

Social media planner bundle 2023


A long-term result to be achieved as an organization moves toward the vision.


The measurable increase in the input, throughput, or output of an organization, process, or

Growth Strategy

Strategy aimed at winning larger market share, even at the expense of short-term earnings. Four broad growth strategies are diversification, product development, market penetration, and market development. 

Growth Industry  

An industry where demand is expanding as first-time consumers enter the market.

Geographic Diversification

Expanding geographically into different markets.

GE 9 Cell Model

GE nine-box matrix is a strategy tool that offers a systematic approach for the multi business enterprises to prioritize their investments among the various business units.

Human Capital

A metaphor for the transition in organizational value creation from physical assets to the capabilities of employees. Knowledge, skills, and relationships, for example.

Horizontal Integration

The acquisition of similar firms operating at the same stage of the production/marketing chain as the acquiring firm. Utilized to expand into new markets and/or eliminate competition. 


The set of management and operational processes required to add to, or modify, an existing strategy, organization structure, process or operating system, such that the change is accepted by the organization as the new strategic and operational norm.


The enhanced capability and/or performance or an organization, its functions, processes, or activities made possible by changes in their design, management, and/or operation.


The materials, equipment, information, people, money, or environmental conditions that are needed beforehand.

Internal analyses

Critical examination of the internal dimensions and performance capabilities of the management, resources, structure, processes, and operation of an organization.


The creation of new products or processes.

Intangible Resources  

Nonphysical entities that are the creation of managers and other employees, such as brand names, the reputation of the company, the knowledge that employees have gained through experience, and the intellectual property of the company, including that protected through patents, copyrights, and trademarks.


The means a company uses to coordinate people, functions, and divisions to accomplish organizational tasks.

Internal New Venture  

A company’s creation of the value chain functions necessary to start a new business from scratch.

Internal Stakeholders  

Stockholders and employees, including executive officers, other managers, and board members.

International Licensing  

An arrangement whereby a foreign licensee buys the rights to produce a company’s product in the licensee’s country for a negotiated fee.

International Strategy  

Companies pursuing an international strategy centralize product development functions such as R&D at home. They tend to establish manufacturing and marketing functions in each major country or geographic region in which they do business.

(Strategic) Initiative

Strategic initiative is a collective endeavor, with a defined beginning and end, to reduce
performance gaps and help accomplish strategic objectives.

Internal Process Perspective

The perspective used to monitor the effectiveness of key processes at which the organization must excel in order to achieve its objectives and mission.

Joint Venture

A third party commercial operation established by two or more firms to pursue a particular market, resource supply, or other business opportunity. Created and operated for the benefit of the co-owners.  

50 Content ideas for social media

Key Drivers of Success 

Areas, internal or external to the organization, where positive results must be generated for the organization to achieve its primary goal(s) and ultimately long-term vision. (IASP)

Key Performance Indicator (KPI) 

A significant and quantifiable measure to gauge and compare performance in terms of meeting strategic and operational objectives that are most critical to the success of the organization.

Key Success Factors

The product attributes, competencies, competitive capabilities and market achievements with the direct bearing on company profitability.

Late Entrants

Firms entering new markets or developing new products after they have been established by other firms. Also called Latecomers.

Long-Term Objectives

A firm’s intended performance over a multi-year period of time.

Low Cost Strategy

One of three generic strategies in which a firm attempts to establish itself as the cost leader in the industry.

Lagging Indicator 

Backward-looking performance indicators that represent the results of previous actions. 

Leading Indicator 

Forward-looking in nature, leading indicators are the drivers of future performance. Improved performance in a leading indicator is assumed to drive better performance in a lagging indicator.

Macro environment

Forces at work in the external operating environment that can affect an organization’s ability to serve its customers and make a profit, e.g. demographic changes and economic trends.

Market positioning

The process of identifying and occupying a distinct niche or place in the market for products and services in order to achieve an advantage over competing products and services.


A Measure is a quantifiable value that is used to track and manage operations or assess strategic performance.

Micro environment

External forces close to an organization that affect its ability to serve its customers and make a profit, e.g. regulatory changes and stakeholder perceptions.


A key activity, whether a deliverable or a decision, being completed in a project or in the development or in the operations of the organization.


An actionable statement that identifies the organization’s purpose and reason for existence.

Mission Statement – A mission statement defines the core purpose of the organization ‐ why it exists. Effective missions are inspiring, long‐term in nature, and easily understood and communicated.

Mission statement of Managementguru.net

Market Leader

The Company that has control over a certain market.  

Market Share

The revenues generated by a firm as a percentage of total revenues; usually measured by industries, markets, or products.  

Matrix Organization

An organizational structure which delegates power to independent operating units which then rely on centralized corporate facilities for functional support.

Mature Industry

An industry growing slower than the overall economy or actually declining.

Mckinsey’s 7s framework

The 7S framework of McKinsey is a Value Based Management (VBM) model that describes how one can holistically and effectively organize a company.

New Product Development

A product development strategy is a plan that includes: details of your new product concept. timeframes, from conception to implementation. market and customer needs, barriers in the development.

Business strategy for new product development.


A concise statement describing specific, critical, actionable and measurable things an organization must do in order to effectively execute its strategy and achieve its mission and vision.

Organizational Capability

A set of resources that work together to enable the organization to produce a particular result.

Organizational Change Management

The method of leveraging organizational change to bring about successful resolution.

Organizational Transformation

The process of transforming the organization to align its operating model to the new strategy.

Operational Performance Management 

A type of performance management that addresses the growing pressure to increase revenue while managing costs, while meeting ever-evolving and expanding customer demands.

Operational Reviews 

Usually used to describe the regularly scheduled internal status meetings of an organization.


A sequence of steps, tasks, or activities that converts inputs to outputs. A work process adds value to the inputs by changing them or using them to produce something new.


An undertaking with a defined starting point and ending point. It includes significant allocation of resources and has defined parameters that determine completion of the project. A project has finite or limited resources assigned to it. In the case of a new projects it includes increased levels of risk and uncertainty.

Performance Driver 

Measures that indicate progress against a process or behaviour. These measures are helpful in predicting the future outcome of an objective.

Performance-Based Budgeting 

A performance budget is an integrated annual performance plan and budget that shows the relationship between program funding levels and expected results. It indicates that a goal or a set of goals should be achieved at a given level of spending.

Performance Gap 

The “difference” between actual and target, the trend of the performance or target gap shows an organization’s momentum.


Entails forming a new corporate entity owned by partners that can be terminated whenever one of the partners choose.  

Portfolio Approach

A method of looking at each of the “businesses” of a firm as elements in a total portfolio.  

Product Life Cycle Analysis

A forecasting technique which analyzes/predicts the performance of a product/service during each stage of its development.


Subjective, as opposed to quantitative (measured). A common source of qualitative metrics are surveys of customers, stakeholders or employees.


Measured, as opposed to qualitative (subjective). Quantitative measures often come from transactional systems.

Readiness Scorecard

A specific application of a scorecard, a readiness scorecard can be used to evaluate an organization’s state of readiness/acceptance of a given strategy.


Typically show the details of performance for a metric or multiple metrics. Reports are often used to drill down to the root cause of performance issues.

Retrenchment Strategy

The Retrenchment Strategy is adopted when an organization aims at reducing its one or more business operations with the view to cut expenses and reach to a more stable financial position 

SBU – Strategic Business Unit

A Strategic Business Unit of an organization. An internal profit center composed of discrete and independent product or market segments. An SBU may be any size, but it must have a unique mission, identifiable competitors, an external market focus, and significant control over its
business functions and processes.

Scenario planning

Scenario Planning is a discipline for rediscovering the original entrepreneurial power of creative foresight in contexts of accelerated change, greater complexity, and genuine uncertainty.


Individual person, group, association, or external organization that has a significant interest in, and/or impact on an organization.


Rule, norm, regulation, custom, or principle that is used as a basis for measurement, evaluation, comparison or judgment.

Strategic alternatives

Potentially actionable options for achieving the direction of the organization. Options should be consistent with the external and internal dimensions of the organization to leverage its strengths and exploit available opportunities.

Social Complexity

The interrelationships within a firm, along with relationships within or across a business process, that are difficult for competitors to imitate.

Sole Proprietorship

The simplest form of business, with only one owner who is personally responsible for the liabilities of the business, whereby the owner and the business are considered one and the same.

Strategic Alliance

A cooperative arrangement governed by contract between two or more organizations for their mutual benefit.

Strategic Issue

The primary matter faced by an organization that must be addressed for the organization to survive, excel, or achieve a major strategic initiative.

Strategic Resources

Resources that provide an organization with an opportunity to develop competitive advantages over its rivals.


In the business context means the cooperation or interaction of two or more business units so that they perform more effectively together than they would if independent.


A mnemonic device for the characteristics of effective objectives.  They should be: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-bound. 

Strategic Alignment

The ensemble of activities required to ensure that all stakeholders come together in agreement and work jointly in a focused and committed fashion to make the strategy work and achieve the shared long-term vision of the organization. (IASP)

Strategic Direction

The vision, mission, values, policies and primary goal statements of a strategic plan. (Rollinson & Young)

Strategic Goals

The long-range, generally stated, directional aims to be achieved in accordance with the organization’s vision and mission.

Strategic Initiative

A key enterprise undertaking to support the strategy and move the organization forward toward attaining its strategic objectives.

Strategic Management

Managerial decisions and actions that determine the long-run performance of an organization. 

Strategic Measure

A quantifiable and qualitative value that is used to track progress towards achieving strategic goals and objectives.

Strategic Objective

Defines an outcome, or set of outcomes, the organization must achieve to meet its strategic goal(s) and to have its strategy succeed.  (IASP)

Strategic Plan

Documents the strategy.

Strategic Planning

Process by which an organization defines and articulates its vision, mission, values, goals, strategies and strategic operating (the results of strategic thinking) for an identified period of time.

Strategic Thinking

Analytic, creative and critical thought processes that produce the ideas and insights that drive the strategic management process from formulation, to planning and through implementation. Result of strategic thinking is the organization’s strategic plan. (Rollinson & Young)


A plan of action to achieve a goal(s) that aligns capabilities, competencies, and resources to take advantage of opportunities and counter threats.  A complete statement of strategy must include what is to be accomplished and how to accomplish it.

Six Sigma 

A quality management and process improvement methodology particularly well suited to process intensive industries like manufacturing.


A skill, resource, or other advantage that a firm has relative to its competitors that is important to serving the needs of customers in its marketplace. See also Weakness.  

Sustainable Competitive Advantage

Competitive advantages that can be maintained over a fairly long period of time. See also Competitive Advantage.  

Switching Costs

The costs incurred by a customer in changing from one firm to another to meet their requirements.  


A target is the defining standard of success, to be achieved over a specified time period, for the key performance indicators associated with a particular strategic objective. Providing context to make results meaningful, targets represent the organization’s “stretch goals.”


Represents details activities or tasks to be carried out to achieve each initiative. It captures information like resources, time , constraints, risk, budgets, milestone, duration to complete the tasks.


A means of describing and/or depicting the performance gap in easily understandable terms. Examples of threshold methods include “letter-grade” (A/B/C/D/F) and “traffic-light” (green/yellow/red).

Turnaround Strategy

Turnaround strategy is a revival measure for overcoming the problem of industrial sickness. It is a strategy to convert a loss making industrial unit to a profitable one.


An inspirational statement that articulates the desired future state of an organization in terms of its strategic direction.

Value Chain

The process steps by which a company moves from the identification of its customer needs to customer fulfilment.

Value Proposition 

Describes how an organization intends to differentiate itself in the marketplace and what particular value it will deliver to customers. Many organizations choose one of three “value disciplines” operational excellence, product leadership, or customer intimacy.

Value Statements

The principles that are important to an organization, that all employees should adopt and live by.