Escape Velocity addresses a “power deficit” in established enterprises that holds them captive to their legacy franchises and renders them unable to capitalize on next-generation opportunities. Moore traces this deficit to a performance-oriented management culture that drives accountability for financial results without establishing equivalent responsibility for replenishing competitive advantage. In this context enterprises continually draw down their reserves of power to fuel the current quarter’s results while failing to stake out future positions of power to drive next-generation growth. Moore’s analysis shows this behavior is deeply embedded in the established norms and practices of global businesses and that a new set of frameworks and disciplines are required to correct for it.
Escape Velocity organizes this material around a “framework of frameworks” Moore calls the Hierarchy of Powers. This is comprised of five types of power, all of which must be aligned to achieve escape velocity. They are:
Category Power, achieved through proactively entering and exiting categories to participate meaningfully in the highest growth opportunities;
Company Power, achieved through highly asymmetrical allocations of resources to create “unmatchable” core capabilities;
Market Power, achieved through targeting the most strategic customer segments and skewing offers and programs to ensure winning dominant shares in each;
Offer Power, achieved through disentangling three distinct forms of innovation one from another, managing each separately, to achieve differentiation, competitive neutralization, and internal productivity respectively; and
Execution Power, with specific attention on transformational initiatives that realign the company around the next-generation capabilities required to execute its strategy.
Moore pulls no punches as he draws on his twenty years of experience advising high-tech management teams to call out the misconceptions and behaviors that trap enterprises into decaying franchises, and he is adamant about the responsibility of executive management to reverse such trends. At the same time, he is empathetic about the challenges involved and highly pragmatic about how best to meet them.