Appendix A

Probing the Strategic Boundaries of the Firm's Unique Competing Space

In Appendix ‘A’ we:
  • derive practical guiding questions for reflecting on the dynamics and their strategic implications at the boundaries of the firm's unique competing space
  • provide templates for summarizing the analyses at the three boundaries
  • extend this analysis to examine interdependencies between the firm's strategic boundaries and their strategic implications

Strategic issues relevant to the firm's competitive position, we argued in Chapter 5, invariably present themselves at the boundaries of its unique competing space. The firm's unique competing space, after all, represents the core of what really matters to the firm in a competitive sense. Firms therefore need to continually monitor and scrutinize conditions as they evolve the boundaries of their unique competing space. Likewise, the need for any strategic response on the part of the firm is triggered by issues that present themselves at one or more of the firm's strategic boundaries. Real business contexts, however, are complex. Issues emerging at one boundary are often coupled to issues that present themselves at one or both of the other two boundaries. Hence, managers also need to look beyond any single boundary; they need to probe interactions evolving between boundaries.

Consequently, focus on the strategic boundaries enables managers to “cut to the chase” in terms of what really matters to the firm.

The exercise presented in ...

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