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035: What are your options? Strategic question #4

Updated: Jun 13, 2023

In this episode, the fourth in my series looking at six essential questions that you need to be able to answer in order to clarify your school's strategy, I ask: what are your strategic options?

I begin by explaining what I mean by strategic options: the strategic level choices that you can make as a school leadership team or as school governing body that will shape the future of your school.

I then discuss the importance of coherence and of focusing on either one or a small number of strategic choices, and I explore the concept of 'strategy stacking', the act of making strategic choices that are coherent, so each choice reinforces and supports the other.

I look at examples of strategy stacking and at some of the biggest strategic level choices you can make, I underline why selectively tackling them is important and I also examine more granular choices many schools may make to strengthen their offering.

Finally, I look at how you might approach making your strategic choices, how you can brainstorm to gather and define all of the different options that you have open to your school, how evidence can be collected and analysed and how sticking points can be overcome.

Episode Highlights

  • Defining strategic options (03:30)

  • The importance of coherence and 'strategy stacking' (05:22)

  • Examples of strategy stacking (06:40)

  • How to approach the strategic choices (12:01)

Download your copy of the free eBook ‘The Strategic Independent School Leader’ at

Catch up on previous episodes at


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