A Way of Working

SLers apply THE SL METHOD by: (a) anticipating changes, challenges, and opportunities in internal and external environments, (b) creating and articulating common values and direction in a generative/minimum specifications manner, (c) establishing and using social capital to mobilize actions, and (d) building the capacity of their organizations by anchoring the learning in engaged self-managed followers/teams. They develop two keystone competencies to cultivate themselves; and two action competencies to cultivate their organization/team.

Self Cultivation - The Keystone Competencies 

  • Competency 1: Strategic leaders possess the skills - systems thinking - reflection - reframing - which enable them to think strategically. These skills make it possible to recognize patterns, make sense out of seemingly unrelated information. They switch from a strategic mindset -“Why and What” - to a tactical mindset -“How and When” - in a rapid and iterative processes when appropriate. The greater their capacity to use Strategic Thinking Skills the greater is their ability to make consequential decisions about ends, strategies, and tactics.
  • Competency 2: SLers are able to create momentum by managing - transforming - bonding - bridging - bartering. They BUILD A BIG TENT and fill it. They use generative processes because they know that change will be fast if people are engaged - slow – if not! SLers can see the invisible ties that link individuals together and to the organization. They understand that the commitment of opinion leaders is the most important determinant of whether programs succeed or fail!

Organizational Cultivation – The SL Method Competencies 

  • Competency 3: SLers are able to run The Strategic Thinking Protocol to create a shared reality and then a shared direction that results in actionable plans. When ends are not externally established, SLers establish them. When ends are known, they create the conditions that produce results by mobilizing people, establishing relationships, capturing resources, creating coherence, and crafting a responsible adaptive learning culture. Their mantra is common ends and values, and adaptable ways and means.
  • Competency 4: SLers are able to run The Strategic Execution Protocol to create the conditions that produce results. SLers are performance AND institutional builders. They understand that you can't manage what you can't measure. SLers lead by example; they don't manage with rulebook. They teach the organization’s point of view; they empower, hire for cultural and performance fit, and tie rewards to performance.

    Schematically cultivating yourself and then your organization looks like this:

The Concepts Guiding the Practice of Strategic Leadership

Self Cultivation

Organizational Cultivation




Strategic Thinking Protocol 

Strategic Mindset

Create a Shared Reality

New Science Principles

Generative Processes

Systems Thinking

Strategic Questions


Strategic Conversations


Create a Shared Direction




Strategic Execution Protocol 


Concrete Clear Target


Track Performance


Teach Organization's Point of View


Make Learning a Priority




Hire for Cultural and Performance Fit


Tie Rewards to Performance, Growth & Contribution

The SLN Catalog

- STQ On Line
- STQ Coach

- SLQ On Line
- SLQ Coach


Consulting Services
- Strategic Thinking Coach



The Leadership Wheel
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