Are You a 21st Century "4S" Leader?

Strategy, Structure, Social Engagement and Stakeholders

If you want to restrict career advancement in the 21st Century, be a "2S" Leader.
If , instead,you want to pursue your Purpose and your Passion, be a "4S" Leader.


Donnie Smith, 4S LeaderDonnie Smith, 4S Leader

Donnie Smith, CEO of Tyson Foods, is a 21st Century "4S" Leader who is transforming a 20th Century "2S" organization.

  1. He has a compelling Strategy
  2. He has Structured resources to support it (professional and personal)
  3. He uses Social Engagement to spread a message he is passionate about.
  4. He works with Stakeholders to achieve it.

Google Semantic Search expert, David Amerland said recently in Forbes:
"The market’s evolving needs must be met by evolving products. 
Those needs are increasingly expressed not in the classic focus-groups of yore, 
but in today’s vibrant social media forums. 
This fundamentally changes the game between a company and its customers."



The 20th Century
"2S" Leader


20th Century 20th Century "2S" Business Model

From the 1920s through the 1950s Alfred P. Sloan was president, chairman and CEO of General Motors Corporation. His career defined successful, competitive business practices of the 20th Century that were widely emulated. 

He developed and perfected the "2S" Business Model.

In 1962, Harvard Business School Professor Alfred Chandler published the landmark book, Strategy and Structure in which he reviewed seventy of the largest corporations in America for how they dealt with a single economic problem: the effective administration of an expanding business. 

He summarized the history of the expansion of the nation's largest industries during the previous hundred years and then examined in depth the modern decentralized corporate structure as it was developed independently by four companies:

  • du Pont, 
  • General Motors, 
  • Standard Oil (New Jersey), and 
  • Sears, Roebuck.

Chandler wrote that a corporate Structure is created in order to implement a given corporate Strategy.

He described corporate Strategy as
"the determination of long-term goals and objectives, the adoption of courses of action and associated allocation of resources required to achieve goals." 

He defined Structure as:
"the design of the organization through which Strategy is administered. Changes in an organization's Strategy led to new administrative problems which, in turn, required a new or refashioned Structure for the successful implementation of the new Strategy."



The 21st Century
"4S" Leader


Today more than ever, as the internet shifts control to the consumer, C-level leaders and company owners (of any size) must continuously adjust Business Models so they address rapidly emerging opportunities and threats

The question is "How and where do I adjust?"

Short answer:
Lean, flexible, ever-revisited "4S" Business Models and engagement systems that incorporate two new components to the mix of 20th century skills a C-level leader must possess and practice routinely:

"4S" Models help leaders gain astonishing insight into ever-changing consumer requirements so they can quickly pivot to address opportunities.

Continuing insight supports more targeted Strategies that address discrete market segment needs, enabling fast execution."4S" organizations then close the loop through "Social listening" programs that generate on-going segment feedback for the next iteration.


To see how you too can introduce a 21st Century "4S" Business Model into your 20th Century organization, start with the Business Model Canvas process.


For additional information, please contact Jim Shankle

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By Jim Shankle, Copyright © 2010-2015 JimShankle.net & MBAMarketingStrategies.com