“Great entrepreneurs must have the curiosity to kind of metaphorically see around the corner: What’s coming?” – In this short interview sequence, Howard Schultz, Chairman of Starbucks, offers an insight into his approach to strategy and execution.
He seems to have a remarkable ability to identify the trigger points decisive for success or failure of a strategy and then to ensure that these vital points are being brilliantly executed. Courage, consistency and firmness – these are the words, which come to mind, when Howard Schultz talks about strategy implementation. “You must have the courage of your convictions to execute the strategy.
He is well aware of the discipline that it takes to stick to the strategy and execute it brilliantly. The example of the product development and launch of Starbucks’ instant coffee stands for this unconditional strategic precision. Years of development went into the product. One could have launched earlier with a good offer. However, Starbucks’ benchmark was clear and non-negotiable: Offering the same excellent coffee quality Starbucks stands for also on instant coffee! This was the success formula, which allowed the company to enter a nearly monopolistic market so far unrivalled dominated by one brand.
Howard Schultz comes across not only as the successful entrepreneur and strategist, who made Starbucks to a worldwide phenomenon, but also as someone who can learn his lessons. He openly talks about failures and how to correct them with the same conviction and unconditional approach needed to implement great strategies.