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The Road to Reinvention: How to Drive Disruption and Accelerate Transformation by Josh Linkner

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Chapter 8Reimagine Your Customer

They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself.

—Andy Warhol

Harley-Davidson, the iconic American motorcycle brand, nearly suffered a fatal crash. From 1973 to 1983, the company’s market share fell from 78 percent to only 23 percent as Japanese competitors produced higher-quality, lower-cost alternatives. Foreign-made better bikes, combined with gigantic advertising budgets, tamed Harley’s roar. The company was days away from bankruptcy when a group of twelve passionate employees facilitated a management buyout of the company and took matters into their own hands.1

Realizing there was no way to compete on price, these mavericks decided to play to the company’s strength: ...

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