The Strategy Garden

‘So where’s she at with that strategy visualisation doc thing?’

‘I hear it’s really taking shape. The garden metaphor is really pulling it together.’

‘It’s a garden?? I thought it was going to be a cruise liner, with all the decks different strategic lenses, and the lifeboats the tactical quick wins?’

‘Yeah I think it was at one point. But that was all too linear. The garden analogy allows her to build in a cyclical element.’


‘Yeah. So each area moves 4 phases – preparing the ground (strategic exploration), sowing (cultural embedding), nurturing (ideation and creation) and maintenance (stakeholder engagement and ongoing governance).’

‘And all of this maps to her original 12-step digital strategy ladder?’

‘Not sure now. Obviously you might have a small ladder in the strategy shed.’

‘There’s a shed?’

‘Course. That’s your strategy hub.’

‘Is there a compost heap?’

‘She’s gone back and forth on that one. The garden is just such a rich metaphor engine, she can slice and dice it so many different ways. But I do think we’ve got a meme on our hands here, something that’s going to be very portable socially.’

‘Right right.’ 

‘Also, another idea she’s had is to create a Strategy Garden App, where you can programme in your own organisation’s seeding and cultivation goals, then receive prompts as to what strategically you need to be tilling or raking when.’

‘Right. And how will this all tie in with the song?’

‘There’s a song? Honestly, how does she do it?!’

Dan’s first collection of short stories, Hotel du Jack, is published by Sandstone. He is also co-author of a comic novel with Unbound, Kitten on a Fatberg. Two of his stories have recently received Pushcart nominations.

He won the 2019 Riptide Journal short story competition, was runner-up in the 2019 Leicester Writes contest, and was highly commended in the Manchester Writing School competition 2018. He has words in places like Slackjaw, Pithead Chapel, X-RAY, Ellipsis, Reflex Fiction, Cabinet of Heed, Bending Genres, The Esthetic Apostle, Spelk, Ginger Collect and Fiction Pool

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