Topic: BusinessManagement

Last updated: January 1, 2020

According to Johnson, Scholes & Whittington (2005), strategy can be defined as “the direction and scope of an organisation over the long-term: which achieves advantage for the organisation through its configuration of resources within a challenging environment, to meet the needs of markets and to fulfil stakeholder expectations”.

Strategic lenses are a concept in strategic management. They are 4 angles that we can examine strategy from an organisational level. They are ways in which we analyse and view strategy. They explain how strategies come about and are managed by an organisation. When faced with an issue or strategic problem, these lenses allow us to view the issue through 4 different viewpoints.

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There are four strategic lenses. They are;

1. Strategy as Design
2. Strategy as Experience
3. Strategy as an Idea
4. Strategy as Discourse

1. The Design Lens

Through this lens we see strategy as a carefully thought out, logical process. It is known as the rational approach to viewing strategy. It comes from top management who analyse and try to forecast or predict the outcomes. It is implemented throughout the organisation by top management. It’s about analysing the environment and assessing the data you see in a logical and practical manner. This lens works because it is assumed that no matter what challenges an organisation may face that looking at the issue and the internal and external factors in a rational way will allow us to come up with a rational solution that will be accepted organisationally once approved by top management. Johnson, Scholes ; Whittington (2005) describe the design lens as “the deliberate positioning of the organisation through a rational, analytic, structured and directive process”. This lens assumes that management are rational beings and the best equipped to make decisions. It also assumes that strategic decisions are intrinsic to managerial roles and in essence “that is what they are there to do” (Johnson, 2005).


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