Friday, 5 November 2010

Can Apple and Waitrose be Wrong?

Business School theory is great. Fascinating stuff. Intellectually intriguing but I am not quite sure what it has to do with reality and what people really do. Here are two quick examples

Steve Job's Strategy? "Get Rid of the Crappy Stuff" - a traditional management philosophy taught in business schools is to reduce risk by diversifying your product offerings.

Apple represents the anti-business school philosophy. Apple's approach is to put its resources behind a few products and commit to making those products exceptionally well. "Apple is a $30 billion company yet we've got less than 30 major products. I don't know if that's ever been done before," Steve Jobs told
Fortune magazine .

Apple clearly bucks the trend that endlessly focuses on diversifying risk, milking cash cows blah blah.

Can Waitrose Have It All? - Why on earth would a brand with an enviably distinctive premium positioning promise to match Tesco prices on 1,000 branded products?

Waitrose will no doubt assert that it is not competing on price, but simply addressing the perception that it is expensive. However, by choosing to match prices with Tesco, it is in danger of being drawn into a price war with the big three supermarkets by proxy.

With Waitrose I am not sure what is going on. Maybe they just haven't read the text books or maybe they went to a poor business school but I don't quite get why they are trying to compete on quality and on price in the same store.

With Apple it clearly works; with Waitrose I am not so sure..
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