What is Your Strategy’s Big Idea?

Every great strategy stands on the shoulders of a big idea. History is littered with once-extraordinary companies that became mediocre when their strategies drifted away from the big ideas that made them great, or when their once-big ideas lost their commercial punch. Consider Walt Disney Company. In 1957, founder Walt Disney had the idea that family-friendly characters brought to life through animation and live-action films could power a broad constellation of entertainment businesses. Disney animated his idea with a hand-written diagram still held in the archives at his namesake company. It has Theatrical Films in the middle of a giant network of other businesses including books, comics, merchandise licensing, music, TV, and Disneyland (the original resort park in Anaheim, California). He drew connections between every node of the network and annotated them to describe how each business supported and gained support from every other.

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