Analysis of Cone Health’s Strategy

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Many organizations, such as Cone Health, utilize the Planning School of thought. This strategic format focuses on very rigorous, formal processes and provides for a lot of control (Mintzberg, Ahlstrand, & Lampel, 2009). However, the organization is currently shifting focus. While my colleague surmises they are moving towards the Entrepreneurial School, it appears they are shifting towards the Design School.

While these two schools can be easily confused with one another as a strong leader can sometimes be seen as an entrepreneur, the two are not synonymous. My colleague notes that leadership is pushing forward with innovation in an attempt to make the organization more sustainable while also looking to the future and making secure investments that will benefit the company. Although this sounds like entrepreneurial formatting, their strategies are unique, clear, and focused based on the ideas of a few, not one person’s gut reaction. In this organization, there is less intuition and personal judgment in the innovation and more defined order that is supported by transformational leadership, which helps distinguish this model as part of the Design School.

The discussion surrounding transforming the strategic thought process towards the Configuration School makes sense. As healthcare continues to take on new forms and be wrought with challenges, the ability to shift the decision-making structure is imperative. Adaptability, which is key to this thought school, could benefit Cone Health and allow them to work with the ebbs and flows of this market (Mintzberg, Ahlstrand, & Lampel, 2009).

Overall, this was a good discussion that highlighted how organizations could benefit from using various strategic formation models. Although my colleague’s analysis differed from my understanding of the schools, the discourse surrounding a way to enhance change through the Configuration School of thought emphasized the benefits of looking at issues from a new perspective. It is a welcome reminder that innovation can occur in many different ways.


Mintzberg, H., Ahlstrand, B., Lampel, J. (2009). Strategy safari: The complete guide through the wilds of strategic management. New York, NY: Prentice-Hall.