Strategy Development Map

The development of a business strategy can be done in many ways. In fact, there are many different types of strategy that may be applied, depending on the context that you are in. We have developed a map to facilitate you in the development of your strategy. We have designed the map on basis of our experiences in strategy development. You are invited to use it freely. If you have feedback or questions, please reach out to us. 


How it works? 

On a normal map of for example a country you can see cities and roads. It gives you and overview of different cities you can visit and the different routes you can take. However, the map does not tell you which cities to visit and which routes to take. For this, a guide may advise you, taking your preferences into account and accompany you on the road.  

The Strategy Development Map works the same as a normal map: It gives you an overview of the different activities and different routes you can take to develop a strategy. Based on your preferences and needs, we can advise you which route to take and accompany you along the way.  

In terms of Music Thinking, the Strategy Development Map is focused on the PERSONALITY cue: The cue to work from the heart of your organisation: from your why and brand values to the holding space you provide for your stakeholders.  

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Key elements in the map 

To give you an idea, we give a brief description for each of the elements of the Strategy Development Map below.  

Context maping

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Mapping context is the process of opening the field and building a shared understanding of the context that you are in. A strategy context map takes the widest view possible, including macro-economic, demographic, ecologic, historic, and social patterns. Based on clustering you narrow your perspective and determine where to focus on in the strategy development process.

Strategy model selection

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You apply the ‘strategy of strategies’ matrix, reviewing the levels of certainty, viability, and malleability of your context. Based on the spot on this matrix, you can choose a strategy. There is a variety of around 120 strategies; each has a very distinct character and will have a different impact on your long-term success.

Ecosystem map

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Having an overview and understanding of the playing field is essential. You map the actors, influencing factors, structures and solutions in degrees to your organization. It allows you to determine the boundaries of your ecosystem, which you take into consideration for strategy development. 

Playing field definition

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You select the most important actors from the ecosystem map, based on your chosen strategy model. You also set your competitive benchmark, allowing you to define your as-is and your to-be position relative to the actors.

Stakeholder map

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Based on your chosen strategy model, you map the most important stakeholders on a stakeholder map. This stakeholder map includes partners, customers and employees, and is defined by key traits of people in roles. Stakeholder mapping refers to the cue EMPATHY: The people-centred cue to see with the eyes of your stakeholders, empathise with them and search for insights that matter to them. 

Uncertainty identification

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Based on what you sense and reason, supported by the information from the context map, you define the level of uncertainty, which supports the process of scenario identification. In the case of absolute uncertainty, there is no need for scenario building. In case of absolute certainty, you may go straight to the only logical scenario.

Identification scenarios

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Based on the defined level of uncertainty, you identify key signals to monitor. Based on the clustering of signals, you design a set of comprehensive scenarios that may play out going forward.

Scenario transition cues

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It is important to know what scenario you are currently in. In order to keep an eye on this, you need to define scenario transition cues. A transition cue is a signal that defines a transition when reaching a certain level, such as a bankruptcy of a supplier or a certain level of bookings over a certain period.

Scenario selection

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Based on the scenario transition cues, you define what scenario is most likely to happen. This is the scenario you will base your strategy on. 


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After you selected a scenario, you may split the scenario up in different stages. These are called horizons. The horizons are defined by an equilibrium state, which means that you need to review the state of the horizon frequently and assess whether you have moved into a different horizon. You put the horizons into expected timelines, while accepting that the timelines may change.

Key value drivers

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This only applies if you choose a strategy model that involves value drivers, such as the Blue Ocean strategy model. Based on your playing field and your chosen strategy, you identify the different value drivers. When you identified the different value drivers, you select the most important/promising value drivers. These are the key value drivers.

Target value system

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You define connections between the key value drivers and put them into systemic relationships. You also make connections between the key value drivers and the other value drivers. Visualising this system is to understand that when something happens regarding one value driver, it also affects other value drivers. 


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From the target value system you will see that paradoxes arise. Here you make a list of all the possible paradoxes. 

Guiding principles

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When you identified the different possible paradoxes, you will have to decide what you will do if paradoxes arise along the way. For this you define guiding principles. Whenever decisions have to be made, you use these. Therefore, it is important that everyone agrees on the guiding principles. 


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After selecting the key value drivers, you define levers for each key value driver. Levers identify the intent of change, given the value driver. Levers are defined in terms of ‘add, increase, reduce or eliminate’.

Actions in horizons

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After you defined the levers, you can put these together with the horizons. Here you list what activities you will do for each lever in each horizon. This defines your cadence for execution and includes the time-criticality of outcomes. 

Game plan

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In the game plan you put the actions in time perspective and the levers together. It is also the first step towards filling the backlog and execution. After you defined the game plan, it is time to define how you will execute this. Therefore, this links to the Music Thinking cue AGILITY: The cue to decide how to work together in which constellations and when to do what. 

Design challenges

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In the game plan you put the actions in time perspective and the levers together. It is also the first step towards filling the backlog and execution. After you defined the game plan, it is time to define how you will execute this. Therefore, this links to the Music Thinking cue AGILITY: The cue to decide how to work together in which constellations and when to do what. 


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Design challenges are the starting point for ideation. Here you come up with many ideas. There is a wild variety of ideation techniques and ways to do this (e.g. brainwriting, 10 plus 10, bodystorming).

Sessions with experts

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Including experts on relevant subject matters helps you to improve, enrich and validate on what you developed so far. 

Concept vision

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Finally, you put the ideas and input from experts together in a concept vision. This concept vision serves as visualisation, inspiration, and rationale behind the chosen strategy.