Tag Archives: Roger Martin

How Will You Win? (Strategically Speaking)

Even if your “Where to Play” (see last post) is not particularly unique, there are always ways to win. Case in point: corner coffee shops, so common they’re found in just about every town and city on the planet. Nothing at all special or unusual about that space. Who wins in that unremarkable market? Starbucks. Starbucks is the undisputed heavyweight ...

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Where Will You Play? (Strategically Speaking)

The question of where to play, strategically speaking, is deceptively simple. Most companies don’t give it enough deep thought and consideration. My friend Roger Martin would say, in fact, that most companies adopt a mindset of “our ‘where to play’ is where God ordained us to play.” In other words, they act as if the space they occupy in the ...

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When Going in New Directions, It Helps to Have a Map

I developed the Play-to-Win Canvas, a large wall map, to help teams explore strategic possibilities. (Click HERE to download a full size PDF, or HERE for a personal A3 size, both sharable under a Creative Commons license.) So, you’ve decided you need to shift strategy. You’ve drafted your current strategy using the Roger Martin Playing to Win five-question strategic question ...

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You Cannot Craft A New Strategy Until…

…you’ve defined the problem with the old one, reframed it as a choice between at least two mutually exclusive options, and generated some initial possibilities through focused, facilitated brainstorming. (Side rant to all the creativity “experts” out there poo-pooing brainstorming: Go pound sand. Brainstorming works very well with proper focus and facilitation. Creativity thrives under intelligent constraints.) Let’s assume you’ve ...

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Why Johnny Cannot Innovate

A few days ago a reporter for Investor's Business Daily contacted me by email, asking several questions about innovation. I didn't have the time to answer all of them, so I asked him what he really wanted to know. He replied that what he really wanted was a bottom line answer to the question of what makes the most difference in a company's ability to innovate. As is my inclination, I reframe such questions to be about what isn't there, versus what is.

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