Strategy vs. Tactic

By Jaxson

  • Strategy

    Strategy (from Greek στρατηγία stratēgia, “art of troop leader; office of general, command, generalship”) is a high level plan to achieve one or more goals under conditions of uncertainty. In the sense of the “art of the general”, which included several subsets of skills including “tactics”, siegecraft, logistics etc., the term came into use in the 6th century C.E. in East Roman terminology, and was translated into Western vernacular languages only in the 18th century. From then until the 20th century, the word “strategy” came to denote “a comprehensive way to try to pursue political ends, including the threat or actual use of force, in a dialectic of wills” in a military conflict, in which both adversaries interact.

    Strategy is important because the resources available to achieve these goals are usually limited. Strategy generally involves setting goals, determining actions to achieve the goals, and mobilizing resources to execute the actions. A strategy describes how the ends (goals) will be achieved by the means (resources). Strategy can be intended or can emerge as a pattern of activity as the organization adapts to its environment or competes. It involves activities such as strategic planning and strategic thinking.

    Henry Mintzberg from McGill University defined strategy as a pattern in a stream of decisions to contrast with a view of strategy as planning,[4] while Henrik von Scheel defines the essence of strategy as the activities to deliver a unique mix of value – choosing to perform activities differently or to perform different activities than rivals. while Max McKeown (2011) argues that “strategy is about shaping the future” and is the human attempt to get to “desirable ends with available means”. Dr. Vladimir Kvint defines strategy as “a system of finding, formulating, and developing a doctrine that will ensure long-term success if followed faithfully.” Complexity theorists define strategy as the unfolding of the internal and external aspects of the organization that results in actions in a socio-economic context.

  • Strategy (noun)

    The science and art of military command as applied to the overall planning and conduct of warfare.

  • Strategy (noun)

    A plan of action intended to accomplish a specific goal.

  • Strategy (noun)

    The use of advance planning to succeed in politics or business.

  • Tactic (noun)

    A maneuver, or action calculated to achieve some end.

    “scheme|stratagem|plan|maneuver|course of action”


  • Tactic (noun)

    A maneuver used against an enemy.

  • Tactic (adjective)

    Tactical; of or relating to the art of military and naval tactics.


  • Tactic (adjective)

    Describing a polymer whose repeat units are identical.


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