Chapter 17. Speed Counts

"Speed is an indispensable ingredient of competitiveness, which helps you to enjoy market dominance, massive credibility, and customer loyalty."

The effective use of speed is a critical and clearly competitive weapon. You must learn to move fast or become history, because everything you do increases your competitive position or moves you one step closer to being competitive toast. When you get right down to it, there are only three viable strategies for coping with the accelerated pace of change: continuous innovation, ongoing learning, and speed.

Confronted with a constantly shifting array of customers, competitors, strategic alliances, and market volatility, the only hope for increased productivity lies in developing the ability to act and adapt at least as rapidly as your competitive environment. In addition, since it's become exceedingly difficult to see more than a few months into the future in most industries, you have but two alternatives to bankruptcy or unemployment:

  1. Achieve a commanding enough position to dictate the changing rules of the game, or

  2. Develop an ability to react immediately to those who do.

Either way, you get fast—and quickly, or you get out of business—quickly!

Accept this reality: customers, supply chains, and associates within a company want things done faster, easier, and smoother. And once they have experienced the combination of quality and speed, they ask themselves: "Why should I tolerate an inferior experience from this slowpoke?" ...

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