Geoffrey Moore’s Escape Velocity is a godsend for company leaders.
Let’s say you have established products and markets but global competition has rewritten all the rules. What do you do for your next act? My advice is to use the clear models and frameworks in Escape Velocity to “free your company’s future from the pull of the past.” Many companies cannot move to new markets or opportunities because of business inertia. Escape Velocity shows you how to change that dynamic.
I worked with Geoffrey on a number of strategy projects when we were both partners at Regis McKenna Inc., the marketing consulting firm that worked with such iconic companies as Apple, Genentech, Intel, HP, IBM and Oracle. Geoffrey had just written his now-classic Crossing the Chasm that provided the framework for how high-tech companies make the difficult transition from early adopters to mainstream markets. His strength is his ability to frame marketing and business decision-making in a way that can be put into action.
This ability is on brilliant display in Escape Velocity, his sixth business book. He frames all of his models under his five Hierarchies of Power: 1) Category Power, 2) Company Power, 3) Market Power, 4) Offer Power and 5) Execution Power. Without going through each power, my favorite take-aways were:
- Lead first (with vision and market understanding) and manage second if you want to achieve escape velocity. Don’t just focus on managing existing businesses.
- Visionary strategic planning requires that you “reimagine your enterprise from the outside in.”
- As you plan for the future, you must 1) Articulate a compelling vision, 2) Set a strategy to realize that vision as a market leader 3) Resource that vision (often through asymmetrical allocation) so it will be successful.
- “Frameworks are not machines; they are vocabulary…[that] enable strategic dialogues.”
Geoffrey sums it all up perfectly by saying:
“In a collaborative network, the advantage goes to whoever can call the tune first, identify the relevant changes under way, find the pivotal role to play, and communicate the vision in actionable frameworks.”
Escape Velocity gives you the framework and multiple playbooks to identify and succeed in new growth areas. It’s like manna from heaven. So get your whiteboard out and start achieving your own escape velocity.