Linking strategic and operational thinking

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A long-standing criticism of training provision in some quarters is that it can be detached from the organisation’s overall strategy. That is, if we are not careful, an organisation can be investing heavily in training and development activities that do not support its strategic direction, while important learning activities to support such a strategy are not invested in Strategic thinking is ‘big picture’ thinking, looking at why the organisation exists, what it is trying to achieve, what direction it is trying to go in and so on. Operational thinking is about the bread and butter, day-to-day workings of the organisation. One way of looking at it is to see operational thinking as being concerned with keeping the wheels of the organisation turning, while strategic thinking is concerned with making sure they are being steered in the right direction.

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