To the Editor:
On Oct. 29, Keith Crain wrote about the new generation of outsider CEOs, Edward Lapham penned a Web column about competitive advantage, and Mark Rechtin bemoaned the loss of excitement at the Tokyo show.
Outsiders, competition, excitement. Hmm - it sounds like an (unintended?) connection to me.
Outsider CEOs are arriving on the doorstep because insiders' bags have too often been more trick than treat.
Competitive advantage is as fickle as the public's most recent experience with your product (Consumer Reports recent dissing of Toyota's reliability).
And the reason Tokyo is showcasing green and sustainability may be because it's getting harder and harder to make a buck in this business. Thinking beyond design execution all the way to brand strategy is probably a good thing for stockholders right now.
Outsiders, competition, excitement: Doesn't that translate to new ideas, new perspective, new direction?
Thanks Keith, Ed and Mark. As usual, you're right on target.