December 6, 2019
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In A Word

Strategy: We asked four community advocates to share their thoughts on one word

Allen Mounts

“Strategy is the crossroads at which creativity (art) and data meet to address the uncertainty of reaching a mission, vision, or goal. For example, suppose your organization wanted to make the ‘Best Places to Work’ list. Your strategy would lay out a clear roadmap that communicates core principles and values used to guide leadership and associates how to use their resources (time, talents, money) to create a ‘Best Place to Work’ culture. Using a local example, how would you describe the strategy behind Evansville’s e is for everyone campaign? Your strategy might include words like inclusion, building community, or personal ownership.”

Mounts is the director of the Evansville Water and Sewer Utility.


Steve Roelle 

“Strategy is a plan of action to achieve a goal. I recently have seen articles claiming ‘strategy is dead.’ I happen to disagree … mostly. Imagine playing poker, training for a marathon, or going to a job interview without a strategy. That would be the perfect plan to wind up broke, injured, or unemployed. Strategy has, however, changed. Gone are the days where you can simply set it and forget it. Innovation, technology, and communication are changing faster now than at any point in history. The best strategies today are flexible and adaptive. Finally, even the best strategy will not succeed without a focus on ‘execution,’ but maybe that will be next month’s word.”

Roelle is the executive director of Success Warrick County.


Chris Cooke

“So you think there is something elaborate to having a winning strategy? I say there isn’t. The basic building block of any winning strategy is to do the simple tasks well, over and over again. There can never be enough emphasis on excellence in repetition, no matter the job at hand. I always want my teams to be able to execute the basics to perfection in their sleep. Repetition of essential tasks forms the backbone of building a winning strategy, for it allows the wiggle room to adapt and make positive adjustments as new challenges are thrown your way.”

Cooke is the superintendent of cemeteries for the city of Evansville and president of the Indiana Cemetery Association.


Alissa Fricke 

“One can survive in life without strategy. You may even get to, or near, the same end goal — eventually. But with it you save precious time, energy, and money. Those who are truly successful at ‘strategy’ help their clients, colleagues, and partners also achieve their goals while holding onto more of these precious resources.
In all that we do in work and in life, there are many paths to choose. Make it a point to define your goals and set a strategy. You’ll be surprised at how much more you can get done. You’ll be surprised at how much less you’ll work. And others will take notice of just how big an impact you will make.”

Fricke is the owner and lead marketing consultant at Thrive Marketing Strategies.

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