Systems Methodologies for Effective Strategic Decision-Making

Amanda Gregory


Strategic management involves decision-making about an organization's objectives together with the formulation and implementation of plans, particularly regarding the allocation of resources, to support their achievement. As such, strategic management is a dynamic and complex process involving consideration of the internal and external, and the short and long term. The effectiveness of strategic decision-making can critically impact upon the viability of an organization and there are many reasons why stategic plans fail. Such reasons include failure to:
 think creatively about the likely affects of plans
obtain external/internal participation and commitment
 co-ordinate and control resources.

In this paper the reasons why strategic plans fail are taken to provide a framework for the evaluation of the potential contribution of a range of systems methodologies to the strategic decision-making process. The systems methodologies considered in this paper include: Viable System Methodology, Strategic Assumption Surfacing and Testing, Soft Systems Methodology, and Critical Systems Heuristics. In the light of this evaluation, the argument will be advanced that such systems methodologies can make a significant contribution to the effectiveness of the strategic decision-making process.


systems methodologies, strategy management, decision-making

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