Change Implementation Techniques for Creating a Sense of Urgency

Technique 2.6 More Important Questions

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The important questions for challenging mental models

1. What is the business mission?

2. What is the product/market scope?

3. What is the basis for differentiation?

4. What core competencies are important?

5. What strategic assets need to be owned?

6. What core processes are critical?

7. How can we best configure/allocate/organise our resources?

8. How do we get into the market?

9. What kind of information is required from our customers?

10. What is the kind of relationship we want with our customers?

11. How do we price our products and services?

12. What particular benefit bundle is going to be delivered?

13. How do we integrate with suppliers and partners?

14. What revenue/profit boosters can we exploit?

15. Based on the answers above, do you need to re-visit the business mission (see question 1)?

(If yes, what should the business mission be?)


i) Elastic business definition

. Deregulation, globalisation, privatisation and new technologies are making industry boundaries meaningless. Furthermore, there is a need to have an elastic business definition that stretches the core competencies and which allows metamorphosis and cannibalisation.

Four examples:

a) GE initially wanted each division to be 1 or 2 in the marketplace; now it wants each business to have less than 10 percent of its market. The rationale for this is that organisations with expansive business boundaries will grow faster than their competitors.

b) Virgin makes no assumption about the industries it should be in or shouldn't be in. Currently Virgin is in industries as diverse as air travel, packaged holidays, music retailing, mobile phone networks, banking and radio broadcasting. Virgin will enter an industry only if it can

- challenge the existing rules

- give customers a better break

- be more entertaining

- put a thumb in the eye of complacent incumbents

c) Similarly, Disney has a brand that transcends any particular industry by being involved in cruise ships, Broadway shows, theme parks, movies, etc

d) FedEx describes its business as "engineering time", with its competitive advantage being information technology,

"...especially customer based technology. We tend to focus slightly less on operational technology. We focus a little more on revenue-generating, customer-satisfaction-generating, strategic-advantage technology. The key driving technology that increases the top line..."

Rob Carter as quoted by Geoffrey Colvin, 2006a

(sources: Gary Hamel, 2000; Geoffrey Colvin, 2006a)


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