Resources  >> The Lesson From Losers

About Vickie Sullivan

Vickie Sullivan is internationally recognized as the top market strategist for thought leaders, professional speakers and B2B professional service firms. Specializing in brand and message strategies in crowded markets, she has helped thousands of talented people outsmart their competition since 1987.

Written by: Vickie Sullivan  |  January 15, 2013

The Lesson From Losers

Let’s take a short trip to the dark side.  Instead of looking at what successful companies do, let’s look at the biggest mistakes from those who have seen their results implode.  This article from Booz & Company’s Strategy + Business is a good start.

The results are ambiguous.  Among the 103 companies studied, strategic blunders were blamed 81 percent of the time.  Wow…81%.  That’s a big majority.

Here’s the key finding for me:  “About half the time, the loss of value occurred gradually — over many months, or even years if the company took too long to grasp a changed srtategic environment or lacked the agility to react.”

My theory:  when we don’t get the results, we know something’s wrong.  We don’t want to admit that it could be our strategy.  So instead, we focus on the tools or execution.  This perpetuates the mistake until finally disaster strikes.

Moral of the story:  when you sense a change in your business, don’t just sit there and fiddle with your website.  Question everything.  Don’t be afraid to look at your strategy.  While we can make the excuse that the big boys can’t move that fast, we don’t have that reason to lean on.


About Vickie Sullivan

Vickie Sullivan is internationally recognized as the top market strategist for thought leaders, professional speakers and B2B professional service firms. Specializing in brand and message strategies in crowded markets, she has helped thousands of talented people outsmart their competition since 1987.