Blue Ocean Strategy for Solopreneurs: Big Picture Thinking Implementation

Today we cover Blue Ocean for Strategy for Solopreneurs: Big Picture Thinking Implementation.

In this series, we’re breaking down the business bestseller Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Marketspace and Make the Competition Irrelevant.

Today, in Blue Ocean Strategy for Solopreneurs: Big Picture Thinking Implementation, we wrap up our last post on big picture thinking and discuss how to use the As-Is and To-Be Strategy Canvas as well as the ERRC Grid.

In review, the As-Is strategy canvas is a visual depiction of your industry and the company’s state of play. It lays out the key factors of competition along a horizontal axis. It cannot be overstated how important the discoveries will be when you start to honestly assess your company’s key factors of competition. Most businesses find that they are swimming in a deep red ocean of competition. With discipline and guidance, these discoveries lead company owners to understand how important value innovation is to the future.

Let’s look at a visual.

In this case, I’m sharing an As-Is strategy canvas around the topic of personal leadership.

AS IS for Personal leadership used for big picture implementation

You can see in the graphic that one is asked to be candid about the key factors of competition among leaders. Translate the horizontal lines into whatever the key factors are for your business or industry and you’ll quickly learn how vanilla your offerings probably truly are. In the case above, the leader is scoring very low on time and effort on the vertical axis.

When you’ve established the As-Is strategy canvas visualization, the real work begins. We covered this process in our previous big picture post.

The steps are summed up here in the below graphic.

Four Steps in visualizing strategy and big picture implementation

Once you’ve taken the steps above, you may confidently move in the work of elimination, reduction, raising, and creating.

The graphic visualization is below.

ERRC Grid for big picture implementation

Again, translate the content to fit your own corporate or personal needs. We’ll actually be going through the ERRC Grid in detail in an upcoming post. Today it’s all about Blue Ocean Strategy for Solopreneurs: Big Picture Thinking Implementation.

After you’ve eliminated dead weight from your business, you can then reduce unnecessary features from key factors or offerings that will serve you.

You’ll then have room in your life or organization to raise certain important elements of your offering or even create new offerings or features.

When you’ve had some time to raise and create offerings or eliminate dead weight, you will end up with a strategy canvas that we call the To-Be Strategy Canvas.

The To-Be canvas is your new compass. With the new canvas, you may now simplify decision making.  If your behaviors, your initiatives, or your investments don’t support your key factors of competition, you defer those behaviors, initiatives, or investments that don’t fit.

Here is an example of both the As-Is and To-Be on the same graph.

as-is and to-be for big picture solopreneur implementation

In the above case, we’re comparing one leader with another. In most cases, you would find the as-is leader didn’t even have some of the key factors of competition present. Perhaps he never reads or she consistently fails to implement.

Let’s take a look at an example from a more business-oriented case.

QB House Strategy Canvas for big picture implementation
Via Semantic House

You see in this case, the value curve is distinctly different between Q House and the average Japanese Barbershop.

This value curve distinction is where value innovation is identified.

In our next post, we’ll discuss the identification and capture of noncustomers. A key component of Blue Ocean Strategy.

If this work is of interest to you, schedule a no-obligation appointment with Sherman Mohr, The Blue Ocean Strategist. He’ll take 30 minutes or so and listen to your business goals and discuss possible blue ocean strategy pathways to profit.