Monday, August 18, 2008

Execution Is Everything

Executing UX strategy ...

"The number one enemy of any strategy is poor execution. All across the business landscape, the ability of an organization to execute its strategy is one of the most critical elements of success. And for an effective UX strategy, the broad range of elements requiring alignment and implementation make its successful execution all the more difficult.
What Is Strategy?

Before delving into the issues surrounding a strategy’s execution, I’d better clarify what I mean by strategy, because this word can mean so many things to different people. It’s common to confuse strategy with strategic planning, which is something else entirely than what I’ll discuss here.

A strategy is a long-term plan of action a company conceives to achieve a particular goal.

The two key elements of this definition are:

a) There’s a plan.

b) There’s a goal.

A strategy has its inception in some purpose or intent to achieve a particular end. The nature of their goals is what differentiates organizations throughout the world. They vary depending on whether an organization is a business aiming to make a profit, a non-profit organization looking to provide some charitable benefit, or a government department delivering some public service.

For some, the aim of a business strategy is to stake out a competitive position that enables an organization to capture a substantial piece of some pie for itself—a pie whose size is probably fairly fixed in size. Setting a strategy comprises identifying a unique value proposition for a particular market segment and delivering that value at a price and quality that are suitable to that market segment.

For others, strategy is about imagining and realizing the future. Rather than staking out a position in today’s market, their aim is to redefine an industry or market ahead of the competition. Such an organization maintains its edge by developing a small number of core competencies that it can leverage over and over again—in different configurations that create new value.

Finally, still others view strategy as the deployment of a company’s current and future capabilities to achieve some shared goal.

So what do we mean when we speak of a UX strategy? Typically, we refer to either of two things:

* a strategy to deliver a specific, planned user experience
* a user experience that advances some particular organizational goal

Again, the central point is that the resulting user experience is both intended and purposeful."    (Continued via UXmatters, Steve Baty)    [Usability Resources]

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