Those words haunted me recently at a radio station.  While they were spoken by a program director about the general manager those words could have once been spoken about me.

We only know what we know.  Until the moment we say that we’re ready to learn, we’re stuck… with only the things in the rear view mirror as a reference.

“Everything I know I learned from someone else.”

Tom Watson

Simply stated, strategy is about the big idea; why do we exist?  What do we stand for?  What difference are we making?

Tactics are about the stuff that gets you there.

“Perception is strong and sight weak.  In strategy it is important to see distant things as if they were close and to take a distanced view of close things.”

Miyamoto Musashi, legendary Japanese swordsman

So… how does one learn to think strategically?

Understanding strategy versus tactics is like understanding the forest from the trees.  When we think of others we see the forest.  When we think of ourselves we get lost in the trees.