On Grand Strategy is a sweeping review of strategy over the ages that develops the conclusion that great strategists have well-defined grand goals and go about achieving those grand goals in a methodical manner. This conclusion is presented by way of an analogy popularized by Isaiah Berlin’s essay about The Hedgehog and the Fox (the original story is attributed to the Ancient Greek poet Archilochus). In this analogy: “hedgehogs, who view the world through the lens of a single defining idea, and foxes, who draw on a wide variety of experiences and for whom the world cannot be boiled down to a single idea.”

You really should read or listen to On Grand Strategy, it’s very good, but the main lesson for entrepreneurs is that, yes, you need to have a vision for what you are doing but the work still must get done. Those who are successful grand strategists, for that matter successful entrepreneurs, have the capacity to synthesize their inner hedgehog and fox.

In an entrepreneurial context, this usually takes the form of a team of founders who all share the vision and combined have a wealth of experiences and knowledge that give them the circumspection needed to ably deliver on their shared mission. I’ve seen too many entrepreneurs fail because they were all hedgehog and not enough fox. Don’t let that be you.

Travis Lindsay

Professor and Investor

CSUF Entrepreneurship

We are dedicated to helping the next generation of entrepreneurs develop the skills that they need to compete locally and globally. The CSUF Entrepreneurship program does many things, including: consulting projects where students serve up fresh strategies to actual businesses, competitions for students from middle school to grad school, helping entrepreneurs go from concept to launch, frequent seminars and office hours for entrepreneurs and professionals, and much more. Interested in becoming a part of the CSUF Entrepreneurship community? Reach out to us at csufentrepreneurship@fullerton.edu for more information! CSUF Entrepreneurship depends on the support of the community, please go here to donate.

Published by CSUF Entrepreneurship

We teach, coach and lead the principled, cross-disciplinary practice of entrepreneurship. We believe that, through determined practice, leadership and team work, our students, faculty, clients, volunteers and alums can systematically recombine the new and the old to forge new ventures, create an entrepreneurial culture, and dramatically benefit our community.

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