Gary Hamel wrote an extremely influential article in the Harvard Business Review back in 1996 ‘Strategy as Revolution’. For me this is one of the most powerful academic writings which anyone can implement into their business strategy. Challenging industrial orthodoxy can prove to be profitable and could produce a competitive advantage. So what has given me the motivation to write about this topic? It was my cat.
It was this morning when I was feeding my cat. I was giving him rabbit and turkey catfood. He didn’t eat it. I wondered to myself, why do I give my cat a flavor of food that naturally cats do not eat. Now I am no cat expert and I know my cat will eat any type of meat I give him, but he will not go and hunt a rabbit. After all he isn’t a tiger. I often see my cat eating mice and birds. I know my cat loves mice and every one knows about Tom and Jerry. It hit me today that my cat would love mouse flavoured cat food. So why not?
Why will someone not produce a revolutionary business strategy to sell mouse flavoured catfood? People know cats love mice so why not buy something that your cat loves.
Lets look at costs:
People breed mice to feed reptile pets such as snakes and bearded dragon lizards so why not mass produce a mouse farm?
Operating costs should be low as it doesn’t take much to ‘feed a mouse’.
Yes it will take a good few mice to fill a can but I’m sure catfood regulations would outline that only a percentage of the ingredients are required to be labelled as that flavour.
You may say ‘Hey Joe what are you talking about man?’
I say innovation. I also say challenge business norms. One other challenge I would propose to the hotel industry and that is checkout and check in time. If I owned a hotel near and airport for example, I would have a 24 hour check in and check out system with flexible staff working through the night. Why? Because if I have a flight late at night, I don’t want to pay extra to stay longer in the hotel and I do not like the idea of having to wait at an airport for hours or carry around my luggage.
If you want to get ahead in a competitive market its time to challenge the old rituals and the mundane norms.
If you agree or disagree, feel free to leave a comment. If you use the ideas suggested and become successful, great, but don’t forget who gave you the idea ;-).
Follow on Twitter @realmoneyjojo