Why Every Company Should be Afraid, Very Afraid

Why Every Company Should be Afraid, Very Afraid

Our title is inspired by a recent New York Times article:

$1 Billion for Dollar Shave Club: Why Every Company Should Worry

In the modern world, companies disappear in a blink of an eye. “Creative destruction” is the name given to technological change that destroys companies and sometimes entire industries. Think of the taxi industry and Uber. Hotels are facing real challenges from AirBnB. Where is Kodak today? Or consider a situation unfolding now: Only a few years ago, Gillette so completely dominated the razor business that Proctor and Gamble paid $57 billion to buy it. Today, Gillette is scrambling because of a 5-year-old startup called Dollar Shave Club that followed none of the rules of the razor business. Dollar Shave Club came up with an entirely different way of doing business – ordering on line, not even making the razors itself, using YouTube for advertising. Dollar did not invent a single new thing: it just took advantage of what was there and used it in new ways (ordering razors online from Korea, distributing via Amazon, advertising via YouTube). Gillette’s massive investment in locking in retailers suddenly does not look that valuable.

You had better expect the unexpected, and you better take steps now to make sure your people who are negotiating deals for the company have their antenna up for what’s going on in your marketplace, so they can turn potential threats into opportunities. If a competitor comes out of left field, are your people sufficiently creative to come up with ways to meet that challenge? Do they know how to brainstorm with your suppliers to come up with solutions which go way beyond the immediate problem, to totally transform your business? Creativity is our middle name – we show how to negotiate deals that create value you did not know was possible when you started the process. Creativity is not a mysterious gift some people have and some don’t – it can be taught. Our seminar can make your people alive to possibilities that otherwise would never have occurred to them.
As the New York Times summed up the Dollar Shave Club experience, “every other company should be afraid, very afraid.”