Who would have thought we would pick up a valuable lesson from a popular television program?
While similar programs (their competition) flourish, American Idol is no more.
They were awesome – they were relevant – they were popular – they had it all.
Sounds like Blockbuster and Circuit City doesn’t it?
Something happened … or maybe, maybe something ‘didn’t happen’ which is why they are no more.
My leadership tip this week is to have you gather your team together and critically evaluate your true competitive advantage. Think this through.
For me a competitive advantage is where you have something the competition doesn’t, thereby placing you in a favorable business condition. This is different than ‘differentiation’ – no pun intended.
Being different is good, but having a distinct competitive advantage is better.
American Idol did not pay close enough attention and / or didn’t respond well enough to the competition. They went from owning a dominant market in their space too no market share. They tried to differentiate but they had no competitive advantage.
I don’t want to see this happen to you. Think this through.
I therefore suggest you:
- Understand your true competitive advantage then aggressively exploit it. If you don’t think you have one, don’t let too much time slip by before you create one.
- Understand your true competitive disadvantage then get on with closing the gap.
Ask yourself these questions:
- Which of our products and or services give us a competitive advantage?
- What makes us think so?
- Which products and or services do our competitors have a competitive advantage over us?
- What are we doing about it?
- Are we truly competing, or are we just conducting business?
As leaders we need to pay attention to our true competitive positioning. If we’re not dominant, then we need to respond in a way that successfully changes or possibly reinvents the business.
Those that do have a true competitive advantage, flourish. Those that don’t, don’t.