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STRATEGIC PLAN - Major Steps, Evaluating Strategic Gaps

The strategic gap is the difference between the firm's current position and its desired position. Operationally, the gap is a measure of the difference between the stated target values and the current values of the firm's primary objectives. Within the gap are the critical issues that must be resolved to move the firm from its current position to its desired position. The table below uses a hypothetical company to illustrate the concept.

 

Strategic Planning Element

Plan

Actual

Critical Issues

Mission

Within 7-10 years becoming a leading manufacturer and distributor of a high-quality full line of salted snack foods

Among the top 3 leading regional manufacturers and distributors of a limited line of mixed-quality salted snack foods

Significant level of geographical, product line, and people growth required

Strategy

  • Become the lowest-cost salted snack food manufacturer

  • Grow geographically via acquisitions

  • Medium-cost range manufacturer of salted snacks

  • Two minor acquisitions in past ten years

  • Significant level of capital investment and technological know-how required

  • Limited acquisition experience

 

Another example of the strategic gap analysis is shown below. It is an excerpt from a McKinsey analysis of the gap that exists in one of the key strategies for an airline company.

 

 



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