The Human Science of Strategy
What works and what doesn't
Bob Murray, Alicia Fortinberry
What works and what doesn't, examining the issues behind each of these questions and how they form the drivers of almost all human decision-making and behaviour.
Scientifically, there are several basic elements in getting human beings to adopt any new strategic idea, which can be encapsulated in four questions:
Will it give me more certainty in areas of my life that I most care about?
Will it give me more autonomy, more freedom, more choice in the areas of my life that I most care about?
Will it increase the amount of trust that people have in me?
Will it increase my value, my status, in the eyes of those that I care about?
Almost all of the strategic failures that the authors - Dr Bob Murray and Dr Alicia Fortinberry - have witnessed or researched have come about because the key stakeholders have answered one or more of these questions in the negative.
The Human Science of Strategy: what works and what doesn't examines the issues behind each of these questions and shows how they form the drivers of almost all human decision-making and behaviour.
Table of Contents
|About the authors||ix|
|Why we wrote this book||xi|
|What leaders will get from the book||xv|
|The failure rate of strategies||xv|
|The good strategist||xvi|
|Chapter 1: Why strategies fail||1|
|What is human strategic thought?||4|
|How viable is human strategic thought?||5|
|The executive bubble||9|
|Chapter 2: Purpose, meaning and values: why the why matters||13|
|The purpose and meanings of purpose||14|
|Engaging with purpose||15|
|Purpose and strategy||16|
|Purpose into practice||17|
|Chapter 3: The neurogenetics of strategy||19|
|Humans are irrational creatures – that’s the good news||19|
|Stress and strategy||21|
|It’s all about relationships||22|
|Chapter 4: Why the assumptions behind strategies are almost always wrong||27|
|How our assumptions influence our decisions||27|
|Assumptions and biases||28|
|Assumptions prevent listening||30|
|Overcoming your hidden assumptions and biases||31|
|Chapter 5: Strategy and the basic human drivers||33|
|The need for certainty||33|
|The drive for autonomy defeats the best strategies||35|
|Nobody trusts your strategy||36|
|Status hunger gets in the way||37|
|Chapter 6: Humanizing strategy||41|
|What is a “human” strategy?||41|
|Steps towards humanizing a strategy||42|
|Meeting people’s real needs||43|
|Attention and importance||47|
|Making needs concrete, timely, and doable||47|
|Chapter 7: The culture problem||51|
|The “why” of culture||52|
|Why are there competing cultures?||52|
|Why strategy and culture must fit together||53|
|Change the culture or change the strategy?||53|
|The how-to of culture change||54|
|Chapter 8: Leadership for strategy implementation||57|
|What is a strategy implementation?||57|
|The danger of the loss of management interest in the initiative||58|
|The role of leadership||60|
|Transformational leadership and the genetics of strategy||63|
|Chapter 9: The art of communicating strategy||67|
|Asking the right questions||70|
|Who do you tell, and when?||71|
|The “how” of communicating change||71|
|Chapter 10: Getting buy-in to change||75|
|The neurogenetics of influence||76|
|The how-to of influencing||78|
|A sense of belonging||80|
|Chapter 11: Building trust in the strategy and the leadership||83|
|The five Cs of trust||83|
|Fear creates distrust||87|
|Chapter 12: Getting it all right||89|
|Don’t rely on assumptions||90|
|Work on getting people to trust you||90|
|There is a right and a wrong way to lead for strategic success||90|
|Make sure your strategy aligns with your purpose||91|
|That’s all folks!||92|
DR BOB MURRAY
Bob Murray, MBA, PhD is an internationally recognized expert in strategy, leadership, influencing, human motivation, and behavioral change. Bob's insights are based on his wide experience in business as well as his deep knowledge of research in the areas of management, psychology, genetics and neurobiology. Clients include premier global law firms and mid-sized firms in Australia, the UK and Europe, alongside many Fortune Global 500 corporations. With his colleague Dr Alicia Fortinberry, Bob won the American Science Achievement Award and was appointed to head the Obama Administration's comprehensive national work stress initiative.
Bob's latest book with Dr Alicia Fortinberry, Leading the Future: The new human science of law firm strategy and leadership (Ark Group, London), shows the potential impact of the new science of being human on organizational success. With Alicia he is also the author of the international best-sellers Creating Optimism and Raising an Optimistic Child (McGraw-Hill, New York).
Dr Bob has lectured at Sydney, Melbourne, Duke, Tufts, South Florida and California State universities.
DR ALICIA FORTINBERRY
Alicia Fortinberry, PhD (Organizational Psychology) has gained global recognition for her powerful, lasting impact on top-tier law and other organizations and leaders. Drawing on the latest science of human motivation and change, Alicia enables firms to shape strategy and build the right leadership, performance and diverse, cohesive culture. Alicia's clients include internationals such as Herbert Smith Freehills and Allens Linklaters and major national and mid-sized law firms, as well as many Fortune Global 500 corporations.
With her partner Dr Bob Murray, Alicia received the highly prestigious American Science Achievement Award and was appointed to head the US government's comprehensive national work stress initiative.
Their latest book, Leading the Future: The new human science of law firm strategy and leadership (Ark Group, London), guides leaders to apply the latest science to areas such as navigating a firm or practice group through rapid change, managing high performance teams, and understanding the needs and motivators of clients. With Bob she also wrote two international best-sellers Creating Optimism and Raising an Optimistic Child (McGraw-Hill, New York).