August 14, 2018
Robert Bradford How do you set yourselves apart from the competition? Do you fear being different?Have you tried a radical new approach in your strategy that has worked (or not worked)? Please continue reading our blog.

Sincerely,

Robert Bradford

The Fear of Being Different

Robert Bradford

Robert Bradford Being different is one of the keys to profitability, however, it is also one of the most feared strategies. Clearly, there are very few success stories about companies that behaved just like their competitors. This may be because managers feel unusually vulnerable when considering a strategy that builds true distinction for their brand. In so many cases we've seen, the courage to build true distinction comes when it seems like the only option.

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Questions & Answers

Can small "breakout" groups be used effectively during the Strategic Planning meetings?

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As a subsidiary of a larger company, there are certain corporate criteria we must meet. How do we accommodate this in the planning process?

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This column is intended to answer common questions related to strategic planning and strategy in general. In each issue we will answer questions posed by seminar attendees, our clients and our readers. Please send your questions to - simplifiedstrategicplanning@cssp.com Mail: CSSP, Inc. PO Box 8272, Ann Arbor, MI 48108

Article Archives

Did you miss these recent articles?

Beat the Competition with Process Technology

By Denise Harrison

Aircraft engines: how did GE beat the competition? Mohammad Ehteshami was faced with a seemingly impossible task. He needed to significantly increase the value of the next generation of GE jet engines. Mr. Ehteshami had years of industry expertise and he and his team set up to achieve the objective. After failing multiple times, a junior member of the team suggested using additive technology as a possible solution.

Technology Assessment - An Important Part of Strategic Planning

By M. Dana Baldwin

In developing our strategic plan, we spend significant time analyzing our market segments and our competition. There are other important factors which can affect our strategies, even our ability to continue in business as usual. Most organizations will have most or all of these factors. However, there will be some which are not present or are minimally present in some companies. This depends on the type of business activities which add up to the complete company profile. This article will be the first of a short series of articles on the "other factors" we analyze in our strategic planning. The first area of these other factors is: Technology Assessment

Why You Need to be Different

By Robert W. Bradford

Differentiation builds dominance in your market. One of the fun things about working with so many different companies is the perspective you gain on different industries. Often times, however, an industry is highly fragmented with no clear dominant player or no clear dominant specialty player. This is worth closer examination, since a strategic framework for building dominance is useful for many businesses.

Silo Mentality Causes Conflict in an Organization - Can Strategic Planning Help?

By Denise Harrison

Silo mentality causes conflict in an organization. Recently, a CEO approached me to discuss strategic planning. He knew, that to be a success, he was going to have to get rid of the silo mentality and get the team moving in the same direction.

Succession planning - an important part of strategic planning

By M. Dana Baldwin

Succession planning for key personnel is an important part of good strategy. Succession planning becomes even more important when the person involved is an owner. Previously we have written about succession planning and the things an organization should do to assure continuity.

Why is Strategic Competency so Scary?

By Robert W. Bradford

Focusing on a single strategic competency can be scary. There are two big reasons for this. The first is the basic struggle with focus - we often feel unsafe putting all of our eggs in one basket. The idea that two competencies will double your chances of success is a false one, though. Two competencies usually means you'll have half the chance of success as someone who is just learning to be the best at one of those competencies.

Re-invigorating Strategic Initiatives - How to Keep Moving Forward

By Denise Harrison

What do you do when progress is slowing on your key strategic initiatives? Leaving your strategic planning session, your team was motivated to get the key strategic initiatives completed. Action plans complete, resources allocated, and everything was moving forward. But now, after several months, forward progress has slowed. Team members have gotten bogged down by the day-to-day requirements of their job. What can you do?

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