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Dynamic and innovative organizations require leaders at all levels who can think strategically, anticipate issues, solve problems, and make decisions based on new and emerging information while keeping the long-term vision in mind.

In this workshop, you will have the opportunity to work with a variety of tools, applying them to an important challenge or opportunity in your own organization. You will develop greater awareness of your own biases and assumptions that may stand in the way of achieving results. You will learn how and when to apply different types of thinking—systems thinking, critical thinking, and creative thinking—to a problem or opportunity and how to work with stakeholders to make and implement decisions.


Participants will gain the ability to be able to:

  • Define strategic, systems, creative, and critical thinking
  • Identify aspects of strategic thinking you currently use and those you under-use
  • Identify organizational and individual barriers to strategic thinking
  • Identify current issues which require strategic thinking
  • Ask questions that stimulate strategic thinking in yourself and others
  • Apply strategic thinking tools to an important current issue
  • Develop approaches to help stakeholders think and act strategically
  • Identify other tools which you can learn and apply in the future



Leaders, project managers, team members, and individual contributors whose work has an impact on the organization’s future.


This course has no prerequisites.


You will receive a course binder containing a copy of the presentation slides.


Introduction and Overview

  • Establish an appropriate climate for learning and clarify expectations


Definitions and Positioning

  • Define and position key concepts


The Big Picture: Considering the System

  • Identify and communicate key components of your organizational system


Strategic Thinking Process Model

  • Identify specific practices which are elements of strategic thinking


Define the Challenge

  • Use the process to frame a problem to work on during class


Map the Territory

  • Create a mental map of the system surrounding a problem or issue


Identify Strategic Opportunities

  • Find leverage points for approaching the problem


Craft a Strategic Vision

  • Create and communicate a vision in order to gain others’ support


Uncover and Test Assumptions and Mental Models

  • Identify and test limiting assumptions


Develop and Explore Scenarios

  • Create a basic set of scenarios and identify action steps


Generate Ideas

  • Apply one or more creative thinking tools to a problem and harvest useful ideas


Make Decisions and Take Action

  • Apply critical thinking skills to alternative options; clarify roles of key stakeholders in the decision process


Learning and Strategy

  • Institute organizational processes that collect and communicate learning


Next Steps and Closing

  • Present and critique action plans and identify practices that encourage strategic thinking


Copyright ©2015 Barnes & Conti Associates, Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.  These courses are used by permission from Barnes and Conti Associates ©2011.

course info

Course ID: BC-8010
Course Level: Advanced
Duration: 1-Day

upcoming sessions

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PMI Talent TriangleThe following table provides the breakdown of the professional development units (PDUs) for this course aligned with the PMI Talent TriangleTM.

  Tech. Ldrshp. Strat. & Bus.
PMP 0 7 0
PgMP 0 7 0
PfMP 0 7 0
PMI-ACP 0 7 0
PMI-SP 0 7 0
PMI-RMP 0 7 0
PMI-PBA 0 7 0

The three columns in the above table are Technical Project Management, Leadership, and Strategic & Business Management.

Other Credits

Other professional (re)certification credits are available, including:

  • Certified Business Analyst Professionals (CBAPs) earn 7CDUs (Category 2B)
  • Certified Software Quality Engineers (CSQEs) earn 1 RU
  • CIPS Information Systems Professionals (ISPs) earn 7 Learning Credits
  • CIPS Information Technology Certified Professional (ITCPs) earn 7 Learning Credits