The Strategy Manager supports and leads a variety of strategic efforts inclusive of playing a pivotal role in building annual/long-term strategic plans. This position is crucial to the business’s ability to establish its short, medium, and long-term plans in a highly dynamic industry.
The Strategy Manager is responsible for the development and oversight of the business’s corporate strategies in order to support growth objectives while strengthening the business core to develop and maintain a competitive advantage.
The Strategy Manager plays a key role in strategy formulation, collaborates with both internal and external stakeholders, and leads cross-functional teams in the development of business-wide operational strategies.
Success in this role demands a strong strategic and analytical orientation coupled with exceptional communication skills as well as a highly developed collaborative nature.
Objectives and Responsibilities of the Strategy Manager
Strategy Definition: The Strategy Manager is tasked with bringing together crucial pieces of information such as competitor performance, operational performance, innovations, markets, etc., from various internal and external sources in order to develop strategic options.
This information will also serve as input for the regular strategy reviews by senior strategy management and business leaders. In this capacity, the Strategy Manager is responsible for spearheading the strategic vision across all fronts of the business.
Strategic Planning: The Strategy Manager is responsible for the development of a decentralized activity planning process and ensuring its adoption across the businesses. He manages the development of corporate plans and budgets by playing a lead role in all the planning and budgeting activities performed by the business. In this position, the Strategy Manager establishes and reviews key strategic priorities and translates them into actionable and quantitative plans.
Alongside the senior strategy management, the Strategy Manager supports the strategic planning process to ensure that this process is timely, focused, and value adding. He also ensures that the strategy planning process highlights existing business issues, making certain that these issues are thoughtfully addressed by the laid out plans.
Strategic Performance Management: The Strategy Manager is also responsible for the management and development of the business’s KPI infrastructure in order to facilitate analysis and reporting of performance against plans and budgets as well as strategic objectives. The Strategy Manager manages the development of weekly/quarterly/annual performance reports for the business’s leaders as well as facilitating cross-functional performance reviews for this leadership.
In this position, the Strategy Manager also supports the maintenance of an effective strategy department inclusive of management, coaching, and development of strategy management personnel and identifying and advising on areas for enhancement and focus.
Strategic Risk Management: The Strategy Manager is further tasked with the development of strategic threat identification and evaluation processes as well as overseeing their adoption across the business. He develops different possible scenarios for the mitigation of possible risks and provides recommendations for the management of these scenarios.
The Strategy Manager, in this capacity, is responsible for the development of weekly/quarterly/annual strategic risk reports for the senior strategy management as well as the business’s top leadership.
Strategy Coach: The Strategy Manager additionally plays the role of a strategy coach to all departmental leadership within the business, providing much needed support in the formulation of individual department strategies. The Strategy Manager owns strategic plans and ensures compliance with these strategies.
It is his duty to review, manage, and analyze existing business strategies in order to provide council to the business’s leadership and ensure alignment with the business’s overall strategy. The Strategy Manager assists departmental leaders and managers in driving and optimizing improvement of key value levers that will give the business a sustainable competitive advantage.
Analytics: The Strategy Manager will also have an analytical role where he will manage analyses that will provide valuable benchmarking for management as well as timely insights to various departments. He will analyze long-term market trends for the purpose of providing recommendations to leadership and management across the business in regard to business development opportunities, inclusive of acquisition and disposal strategies.
Collaboration: The Strategy Manager plays a highly collaborative role and will routinely work with the business’s senior executives in setting the vision and agenda of the business and work with the day-to-day planning teams in developing a clear roadmap that will realize the business’s vision. The Strategy Manager also works with the business’s clients in order to realize real business issues and develop a strategy for the business’s direction from the gathered insights.
Other Duties: The Strategy Manager performs similar duties as he deems fit for the proper execution of his duties and duties as delegated by the Senior Strategy Manager, Head of Corporate Strategy, Director Corporate Strategy, Chief Business Development Officer, or the Employer.
Required Qualifications of the Strategy Manager
Education: The Strategy Manager has to have a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, Industrial Management Finance, Economics, or any other related business field. An equivalent of the same in working experience is also acceptable for the position.
Experience: A candidate for this position will have had at least 2 years of working experience in a corporate strategy position within a fast-paced and dynamic business environment, preferably as support personnel for the Strategy Manager. The candidate will have gained substantial exposure to corporate strategy management, with direct exposure to top management strategy formulation and decision making.
He will also have had experience being a central piece of a wide range of strategic decision-making processes and as a result have become comfortable assessing a business and making appropriate choices. A suitable candidate will be a natural collaborator with an ability to establish and maintain lasting relationships both internally and externally.
Communication Skills: The Strategy Manager must additionally be a strong communicator, both verbally and in written form. This is a highly sensitive and collaborative role that demands that the Strategy Manager routinely interact with and council top leadership and executives on the strategic direction of the business.
As such, he must have the ability to clearly convey information and instructions, which will determine the effectiveness with which strategies are executed across the business and ultimately determine whether the business achieves its goals and objectives. The Strategy Manager will also interact with the business’s consumers to gain accurate information and insights; he must be able to clearly articulate queries that will in turn prompt relevant and useful responses.
Communication skills for the Strategy Manager will also be useful in the creation of regular reports for the business’s leadership, which must be easily digestible, unambiguous, engaging, informative, and convincing.
Analytical Skills: A suitable candidate will also demonstrate exceptionally good analytical skills, an ability to translate raw information into actionable strategies and initiatives. He will have a demonstrated ability to perform standard analyses such as performance analyses, competitive analyses, market analyses, etc.
Ms Office: The candidate will also demonstrate proficiency in the use of Ms Word, Ms Excel, and PowerPoint, which will be necessary for the creation of both visually and verbally engaging analyses reports and presentations, for the business’s leadership and management as well as senior strategy management.
Interpersonal Skills: A candidate for this position must demonstrate strong attention to detail, have high-energy and a proactive nature, have a positive can-do attitude, be result-driven, have exceptional problem-solving skills, and work comfortably in a group/collaborative setting. He must also work comfortably with business executives and leadership, have an ability to multitask and meet aggressive deadlines, and demonstrate an ability to stay calm under pressure.
People Skills: The Strategy Manager must be a people person who also has the ability to lead, inspire, and motivate a team into consistent performance improvement. The Strategy Manager must also be passionate about team building and be an outgoing, likable, and relatable individual who forms strong and lasting connections with others.
This will inspire trust and confidence in the business’s leadership and management, who will then be willing to follow in his strategic insights and directives.