Agile innovation Blog Processes Vision & strategy

Strategy on one page

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A value for communication. The content and the wrapper.


Today, communication is considered essential and organizations, from private companies to third sector organizations, communicate a lot and very different means. Therefore consider it a priority to establish a communication plan to enhance its image and brand.

In many cases, it should be noted that communication, and thus a consistent communication plan is part of a larger whole that is the marketing strategy. And this in turn is a result and part of the vision and strategy of the organization.

Paradoxically, when we asked managers for their “midterm vision”, their strategy or value proposition, we frequently find that they have caution, and often contradictory responses among different people from the same organization.

So where the vision and strategy are explicit? Probably has not been well communicated, is not clearly shared or is in a forgotten file, but later decisions have then denied it.

We face the problem of communicating something whose content is unclear.


A single A4 page (Max. A3) should suffice to effectively communicate the vision and strategy, formulated through a number (3-8), of principal axes or strategic axes.  In this way we present a model that means:

What is the strategy on a page?

  • A model to express the vision of a company or organization in a clear and summarized, understandable way.
  • A tool to help SMEs to identify, develop and implement its strategy and thus a way to fulfil its vision by providing a means to success.
  • Recognises that SMEs typically have limited time and resources
  • A Guide to the company through the process of defining the medium-term vision and, finally, to define the strategic priorities and to achieve defining clear objectives.
  • Simplifies communication and understanding by presenting all relevant information on one page

It is much better if it can include a clear and defined purpose or mission of the company and the core values of their culture.

The construction is based on the following diagram that we call Strategic tree.


Strategic tree enThere are three separate areas:

  • What is valid long-term: mission and values
  • The present
  • The future we want (medium term, 3-5 years)

Between the present and the future there is a “gap”, a jump to make, a difference that requires possible strategic alternatives.

There are also barriers and obstacles that come from inside or from the environment.

The key questions are:

  1. Present. Where are we now? Here we can use tools such as SWOT or Michael Doyle analysis. We basically detect our dissatisfactions with the present and our ambitions for the future.
  2. Our customers and stakeholders. Who are they and how they evolve. That indicates our knowledge and relationship with them. How are they involved/committed in our projects?
  3. Analysis of our value proposition to both customers and stakeholders. This is our value proposition today. See if it will remain valid in the future with our projects and foreseeable changes.

From there begins our prospective analysis and formulation of our ambitions. There are other questions to answer:

  1. What we want to be? As we watch our organization or company in the medium term. Define the vision has to do with ‘see’ with representing an image of the future and move it to know this. It has to do with defining where we want to and we want to be.
  2. Redefine the value proposition for the future. In a scenario that is not today. For our clients and stakeholders of the future.

This creation and understanding of the vision is the basis for the whole strategy definition on one page.

Strategic Axes:

This model clearly presents the vision: A Concise but sufficiently explanatory paragraph. It is framed by the definition of the mission above and values on the left. The main strategic axes are presented in columns, headed by strategic objectives pursued in each axis, mainly facing the inside company.

The strategic axes are generally oriented to the customer, and can be shared externally while strategic objectives are generally oriented inside and is not always necessary to show them out. Finally, the necessary actions to perform are specified in each axis. Action plans are also external or internal, according to objective and time.

This matrix or strategic map on a page, (it is sometimes necessary to move from A4 to A3 …) shown to be highly useful in many companies. Form that can be easily taken our priority lists, managing portfolio, and innovation projects. This comes very well to frame and align the innovation process with vision.

Strat 1 page example 1

Indeed, the visibility of the portfolio of projects and their distribution is immediate. We have a real map that positions each project or action in the strategic areas of the company and we can immediately see if the different axes are well covered and at what level they are. This should allow immediately start a new project or action where a deficit is detected. It will also be easier to evaluate priorities based on their relevance to the strategic objectives and the level of contribution of each to the shared vision.

The same applies when we establish the foundations of marketing and communication plans.

However, the criteria for adjustment the financial planning, EBIT and ROI calculations are following this exercise and normally should be done later.

The advantage of cohesion and integration with the innovation process is clear. Moreover, clearly means that each member or participant in a project will see the direct link that connects his project with the vision of the company and at the same time understand their contribution.

We may recall the famous response of a stone cutter cited by Vincent Lenhardt “How, don’t you see I’m not carving a stone? I’m building a cathedral”

The company objectives and performance measures that must accompany them, can be formulated in a coherent and adapted basis to the different levels that are addressed:Strategic axes 1 en

  1. Strategic Objectives. Those who lead those who have called strategic axes. They are collective, shared by the entire company, focus on the medium and long term. They influence the creation of an innovative culture.
  2. Strategic axes. Common to the entire process, core strategies focused on performance and in the medium term. They are designed with the strategy.
  3. Operational objectives. Common to a process, project or department. Focus on short-term performance.
  4. Individual objectives. Integrated into the process or project objectives and contribute to the operational objectives in each area or department.
  5. Intermediate milestones with indicators of compliance or deviation, analysis and corrective actions.

Examples of ‘Vision’ and ‘Mission’ in the Industry.

Boeing Group Vision is: People working together as a global enterprise for aerospace industry leadership. How will we get there?

  • Operate as One Boeing
  • Deliver customer value
  • Lead with innovation
  • Fuel growth through productivity
  • Leverage global strength


In order to realize our vision, we consider where we are today and where we would like to be tomorrow. There are certain business imperatives on which Boeing places a very strong emphasis.

  • Detailed customer knowledge and focus
  • Technical and functional excellence
  • Large-scale systems integration
  • Lifecycle solutions
  • Lean global enterprise

AirbusGroup aims for leadership of the commercial aeronautics and defence and space markets, based on its strong European heritage. To do this, we’re driving innovation, globalisation, services and value- chain optimisation, all of which will result in improved profitability and performance.

Microsoft: our mission is to enable people and businesses throughout the world to realize their full potential. We consider our mission statement a commitment to our customers. We deliver on that commitment by striving to create technology that is accessible to everyone—of all ages and abilities. Microsoft is one of the industry leaders in accessibility innovation and in building products that are safer and easier to use.

Boehringer Ingelheim: The Boehringer Ingelheim group of companies´ objectives and beliefs can be summed up in a single phrase: Value through Innovation, the central concept of our corporate vision. Together with our corporate culture concept “Lead & Learn“, this vision is the driver of our corporate culture.Strategic axes 2

Serve patients, attract and retain talent and act with integrity, honesty, transparency, fairness and full regulatory compliance.


  • To serve patients by ensuring quick access to innovative high quality products and services which improve quality of life.
  • To attract and retain talent by creating a stimulating work environment that fosters development and career growth.
  • To act with integrity, honesty, transparency, fairness and full compliance with laws and regulations.

Sanofi-Aventis:  A healthcare partner focused on patients’ needs. At the heart of everything we do are people. Through our vaccines, medicine and solutions, we help prevent and where needed, treat those in need. As economies and societies evolve, we need healthy populations to meet the future challenges we will face. Healthcare needs have changed and will continue to do so and as an industry we have to adapt to meet these needs.

To have a real impact in the future, we need a sustainable business so we can continue to invest in delivering innovative solutions. At the same time we have a responsibility to improve access to medicines and quality healthcare. In order to move along in this ambition, we are pushing forward with our key strategic priorities:

  • Be a global healthcare leader with synergistic platforms
  • Bring innovative products to the market
  • Seizing value-enhancing growth opportunities
  • Adapt structure for future challenges and opportunities

Puig:  is a third-generation family-owned fashion and fragrance business based in Barcelona. The strength of Puig lies in its ability to build brands, to shape the image of brands through fashion, and to translate that same image into the world of fragrance through storytelling and product excellence.

The company’s strong performance has resulted in substantial growth and revenues of € 1.49 billion in 2013. Puig success stories include a combination of owned brands such as Carolina Herrera, Nina Ricci, Paco Rabanne, Jean Paul Gaultier, Penhaligon’s and L’Artisan Parfumeur, licenses such as Prada, Valentino and Comme des Garçons, and celebrity fragrances. Puig products are sold in more than 140 countries.

Values. We are inspired by the values expressed in the Puig motto: Passion, People, and Performance.

  • Passion. We enter whole-heartedly into our endeavors. We are passionate about the quality of our products, the success of our business, the dreams of our consumers. For Puig, Passion is… Audacity. Emotion. Creativity. Innovation.
  • People. It takes the collective talent of ambitious, hard-working teams to create and market some of the world’s most distinctive fragrances. At Puig, People means… Commitment. Entrepreneurship. Authenticity.
  • Performance. As a family-owned company we can take the long view and seize opportunities as they arise. Consistent performance speaks for itself. At Puig, Performance stands for…

Long-term Vision. Common Sense. Embrace of Challenge. Efficiency.

ZARA: The company‘s vision statement:

Zara is committed to satisfying the desires of our customers. As a result we pledge to continuously innovate our business to improve your experience. We promise to provide new designs made from quality materials that are affordable.

Mission: “Through Zara’s business model, we aim to contribute to the sustainable development of society and that of the environment with which we interacts”

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Francesc Guell is the owner of this site. He was CEO and director of international companies in specialty chemicals and pharmaceuticals. The last 12 years was associated with international consulting groups, providing advice and support to businesses on topics such as innovation and agile innovation processes, operational excellence, knowledge management, change management, strategy and integrated business management. Currently creates and presents courses and workshops on these topics. He graduated as a chemical engineer, postgraduate from ESADE Business School in Business Administration and Master in Knowledge Management. He participated in numerous programs, seminars and ESADE, IESE, EADA, APD and MCE (Management Centre Europe). He is author of articles, presentations and courses on innovation in strategic management, integrated business models, knowledge management, performance measurement, change management and excellence in business processes. See more in: Professional Profile