StrategyLeader® L.A.T.I.N          Adapting to Competition

Keeping one step ahead of new and existing competition

Evolutionary Changes is a LONG TERM WINNER!

            I want discuss the EVOLUTIONARY changes and UNIQUE FEATURE strategy to either initiate or build on the first strategy.

            The real long-term revolutionaries need to recognize that to maintain their lead they need to evolve change and be prepared for competitors who may not only catch up, but even leap frog.

            I mentioned in my discussion of revolutionary breakthrough leaders like Xerox, Kodak and IBM that they lost position because they were unwilling to modify or canalize their products or services. Xerox and IBM refused to participate in the low-end areas. IBM created Microsoft and Intel since they refused to participate in these low margin segments. and processing business and it did and they no longer exist.

            The key for the leader and innovator is to have the next version on the shelf ready to be marketed and introduce it before the followers provide them.      Timing is everything! If the leader introduces new versions too fast they may negatively impact their existing line, if they wait too long the competitor may have already gaining a strong position. Apple is a classic example. I believe the Cook has introduced too many new versions of the I-phone too early and have slowed down their growth instead of enhancing it.

These are the success factors for being an “evolutionary/ features added” leader:

1.    Continually survey current users to know what they like and dislike and use this to design the next version.

2.    Be open minded about the responses and not defensive. Often the leader resents criticisms of their genius and refuses to accept feedback.

3.    Anticipate and evaluate the competitors or potential competitors to anticipate what they will do. Recognize that the new competitors might come from other markets and not just those currently in the market.

4.    Never think that you have a monopoly on being creative.

5.    Test the new versions to assure that they are not just substituting for the current offerings, but actually add or improve features that the users want and not just what you and your team think is important.

6.    Have the next version ready and introduce it just before the competitor does

7.    Once you have the new version launched get ready for the next version and follow the same logic.

            Next we will discuss another version of evolutionary change, “planned obsolescence”.  If you want another view of this take a look at my books. All of them cover this concept in different ways.

Bill Rothschild

GAINING AND MAINTAINING the COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE

Published by McGraw Hill. 1984

              A "blueprint" for any organization who wants to maintain its competitive advantage and be a long term winner. Many organizations, especially those in health care, education and often in technology, believe that they are immune to the impact of competition and behave they are "masters of their own destiny".

              Bill Rothschild provides a systematic, proven approach to analyzing existing competition starting with their leadership and their current strategies. He starts with an evaluation of the competitors priorities and strategic direction and then examines how and why they differentiate themselves. He then takes each "implementation" strategy, like their product development, marketing, sales, pricing, production and human resources and shows how these strategies are strong and vulnerable.

              Strategic Mapping is a unique technique that Bill uses to show how and why "NEW and EMERGING" competitors can change the "name of game" and "success factors". In short this book is still highly relevant and even more important today than when it was written.

The current version can be purchased from Rothschild Strategies Unlimited LLC for $25 per book (includes priority mail shipping). If interested contact Bill Rothschild at bill@strategyleader.com. (Discounts available for 15 or more books).