What strategy and innovation are really about

“A company can outperform rivals only if it can establish a difference that it can preserve. It must deliver greater value to customers or create comparable value at a lower cost, or do both … delivering greater value allows a company to charge higher average unit prices.”

Michael E Porter, strategy visionary

Strategy is about barriers to entry

“In business, barriers to entry are required to generate superior returns … by definition, only sustainable barriers to entry can support sustainably outstanding performance … If we use the term strategic to describe an activity that is designed to enhance the long-term value of a business, then strategy is exclusively about establishing or reinforcing barriers to entry.”

Jonathan A. Knee, Bruce C. Greenwald, Ava Seave – The Curse of the Mogul

Mimicry comes at the cost of memorability.

Richard Shotton

Strategy is – what will make you unique

“Managers get into trouble when they attempt to compete head-on with other companies. No one wins that kind of struggle. Instead, managers need to develop a clear strategy around their company’s unique place in the market … Managers who think there is one best company and one best set of processes set themselves up for destructive competition. The worst error is to compete with your competition on the same things. That only leads to escalation, which leads to lower prices or higher costs unless the competitor is inept. Companies should strive to be unique. Managers should be asking, ‘How can you deliver a unique value to meet an important set of needs for an important set of customers?’ … Strategy has to do with what will make you unique.”

Michael Porter, strategy guru

The source of competitive advantage – being different

Competitive strategy is about being different. It means deliberately choosing a different set of activities to deliver a unique mix of value.
… The essence of strategy is choosing to perform activities differently or to perform different activities than rivals.

Michael Porter, the godfather of modern business strategy

List the top ten most important things you can do – start with number one

Frederick Taylor‘s advice to Andrew Carnegie, retold by Richard Rumelt in ‘Good Strategy / Bad Strategy’

A strategy that is easily copied fails fast

Dan Wallace, co-author – The Physics of Brand

Be different and distinctive

“The more people that do the same thing, the less different and distinctive it becomes. And the less different and distinctive it becomes, the less effective it is. And that’s a real imperative towards innovative thought and innovative action.”

Murray Calder, strategist