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Strategic corporate imagination

A work presented at Ca’ Foscari university reviews the concepts of innovation and strategy, also taking into account the need for consistency with corporate culture

Companies need to win on the market. And to do so, they need to produce good products, but they also need to implement strategies that keep up with the times, the context, the competition. It is no easy task, not even for big companies. It is a question of entrepreneurial flair, but also of strategic and innovative abilities.

It is around this group of topics that the work entitled “L’Innovazione Strategica. Per la (in)coerente rappresentazione del Modello di Business” (Strategic Innovation. For the (in)consistent representation of the Business Model) by Elena Trovò revolves; the entire reason for the investigation is explained in the first few lines. “A company must (…) be able to adopt the correct competitive strategy to face oncoming threats from the market. The term strategy has for hundreds of years been associated with a context of war, which notoriously involved a winner and a loser; similarly, doing business means fighting, fighting to win over others and stay afloat in a constantly evolving environment, marked by a high risk index. However, strategy alone is not always enough; strategic decisions must stay in line with a fundamental concept these days: namely innovation. (…) Pursuing strategic innovation not only means analysing the external context but also being clear about what one’s business model is”.

Thus an analysis of the world surrounding the company, but also a clear conscience about what one wants to do. With a continuous exchange of information between the inside and the outside. “This awareness – the author explains – translates into the primary objective of strategic innovation, in other words the untiring pursuit of the right fit between incoming signals from the outside and the impact they have on one’s identity and on the business model. To keep up with the changes occurring in the world, and all the more so if one wants to change the world somewhat, there needs to be a constant synergy between what is going on inside and outside the company. A synergy that should be pursued in a wider dimension of consistency (internal/external fit)”.Among other things, it is curious and interesting to note the use of the word fit  which can also be explained as “adapting” but also “wearing” and “suiting”.

Indeed, it is on the pursuit of the most suitable methods to achieve a “wider dimension of consistency” – as well as adapting internal and external requests of the company -, that Elena Trovò’s work focuses. Starting with an in-depth investigation into what innovation is, followed by an analysis of the concept and implications of strategic innovation, and ending with the entire upheaval of it all: an examination of the passages to innovate strategy with which companies can act.

The contents of “L’Innovazione Strategica” are a good compendium of arguments, information and conceptual schemes around a complex and evolving theme. It should therefore be approached with caution. Trovò ends the work with a significant leap in her thoughts. “There is (…) the possibility that to pursue a consistency in meaning, the company needs to become detached from the traditional canons of strategic consistency, but this break – and therefore apparent inconsistency – may not only prove necessary to maintain a good level of consistency of meaning, but it many actually represent its major strong point”. Which is the same as saying: the winner on the market is the one capable of shuffling the cards and beating the others with a splash of imagination.

L’Innovazione Strategica. Per la (in)coerente rappresentazione del Modello di Business (Strategic Innovation. For the (in)consistent representation of the Business Model)

Elena Trovò

Honorary Master’s Degree in Administration, Finance and Control. Università Ca’ Foscari, Venice

2016