– Thoughts on Strategy and Management

Play-to-win strategy canvas

Helpful tool for strategy formulation: the Play-to-Win Strategy Canvas


I just came across a great visual tool that supports strategy formation. It is the brand-new Play-to-Win Strategy Canvas developed by Matthew E. May. This is a one-page canvas which guides you through the whole process.

Play-to-win strategy canvas

Screenshot of the strategy canvas from http://matthewemay.com

This tool facilitates a process that is inspired from Roger Martin and A.G. Lafley’s book Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works. It starts with the question “Why do we need a new strategy?” and then guides you through seven steps:

  1. Winning aspiration
  2. Where to play
  3. How to win
  4. Capabilities needed
  5. Systems required
  6. Reverse engineering
  7. Strategic tests

There are a couple of things I like about this strategy canvas:

  • It is completely paper-based. Intended to be used with a pile of post-its, it facilitates the development of ideas.
    Software-based tools are great for collaboration and communication. However, some tasks simply require a team to come together and work on something tangible.
  • It encourages you to start with your existing strategy and to move on from there. In most situations, business strategies need an evolution, not a revolution.
  • It does not use the somewhat overworked process of internal and external analysis – SWOT – strategic options – strategic choice. Thus, it avoids the analysis-paralysis and focuses the team on the really relevant questions.

For more information, here is Matthew E. May’s introduction of the Play-to-Win Strategy Canvas, which comes with some recommendations for using the canvas.

If so, subscribe to our mailing list. Just enter your best mail address and hit the Subscribe button!
100% spam free – guaranteed!

Leave a Reply

Required fields are marked *.

Show Buttons
Hide Buttons