One of the main goals of SPS is to help bridge the gap between strategy as an academic discipline and the practical real life applications of strategy. Events at participating business schools will bring the insights of strategy practitioners to students, academics and businesspeople alike, helping accomplish this aim.
An address titled Strategy theory into practice: Insights from a global company was given by Llyr Jones, Group Head of Strategy at BAE Systems, at the launch event of the SPS Strategy Club at Cardiff Business School. Jones spoke to an audience of around 300 students and local businesspeople. The talk was followed by a private dinner with faculty professors, student ambassadors and local business leaders.
Robert Morgan, Head of Strategy at Cardiff described it as “a great event”. Ian McDonald Wood, Chairman of SPS, said Jones “gave a master class “.
After giving a profile of the company, Jones discussed the use, misuse and overuse of the long term strategy. He offered an overview of the various definitions offered by academics and consultants before explaining what strategy means to him. This set the context for an exploration of the way BAE Systems approaches strategy at a macro level (the issues the firm cannot influence), and the micro/market level (where the firm does have influence). He talked of the use of tools and models, and their value as an aid to thinking, but cautioned that tools in themselves never offer answers. Jones also ran through some common errors in strategy formulation.
Insights on the way BAE Systems develops and implements strategy demonstrated how the issues already raised could be seen in practice and were followed by an overview of the company’s current strategic framework and plan. Finally, the audience were reminded that strategy should be practiced as a continuous process, not an annual event.
Jones said: “It was a real pleasure to talk to such a large interested audience on strategy”.
Students and businesspeople present also gave excellent feedback. Presentation slides are available upon request firstname.lastname@example.org.