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Strategic Discipline Blog

Calculate Your OUTthinker Score – The Assessment Re-Visited

Posted by Douglas A Wick on Mon, Jul 9, 2018

This week I’m on vacation.  Last Thursday’s Blog, The OUTTHINKER PROCESS – Outthink the Competition Chess Piece STEP (Example) shared my customer’s first step in the Outthinker Process. The framework for this first step requires your leadership team to take a closer look at your business in terms of your competitiveness.  The 8 P’s assessment, the Outthinker Score, provide great clarity on how your business is positioned against your competition.

Are you concerned about how your business is positioned for the future?  Is your business prepared to withstand the current and emerging Digital Disruption? Taking the 8’ P’s Outthinker Assessment will give you a much better vision than the SWOT or SWT you have probably done in the past.

An objective look at whether your business is behind, competitive, or differentiated will indicate whether you are prepared for digital disruption.  And trust me, if you are not differentiated substantially against your competition, your business is not prepared.

We will continue Step 2 in my customers example of the Outthinker Process when I return the week of July 16th.

Here is my blog originally published on October 12, 2017 with some minor revisions:


It’s been asked of me, “Why all the emphasis on Outthinking?”

DISRUPTION IS COMING TO YOUR BUSINESS.  If it hasn’t already, it will be.  This graph shares the evidence we’ve already seen in business and industry’s affected by disruptive technology.

WAVES OF digital-transformation-a-model-to-master-disruption-2Several of my blogs share the 5 most commonly used strategies by Outthinkers to disrupt their competition to achieve success, according to Outthink the Competition: How a New Generation of Strategists Sees Options Others Ignore by Kaihan Krippendorff:

  1. Move Early to the Next Battleground
  2. Coordinate the Uncoordinated
  3. Force a Two Front Battle
  4. Be Good
  5. Create Something Out of Nothing

You may wish to review them.  They contain examples of several companies already enjoying the disruptive capabilities Krippendorff shares in his book.

Your OUTthinker Score

Kaihan Krippendorff keynoted our Monday morning Coaches Summit in St. Louis.  I shared Krippendorff’s insights on knowing your customer in What Does Your Customer Care About – Product Attributes. Kaihan Krippendorff, the developer of the Outthinker Process®, a past keynote speaker at Gazelles Growth Summits, is now partnering with ScaleUp Coaches to develop a customized version of the Outthinker methodology tailored for our customers. I’ve already begun this process, completing an on-line workshop Krippendorff offers, and by attending his first training session at our New Orleans ScaleUp Summit.

outthinker Self AssessmentOne of the first steps to develop any process is to benchmark where you are now. Create a baseline.  “Prescription without diagnosis is malpractice.”

In the Outthinkers course Krippendorff provides a self-assessment on where you currently are in the Outthinker concept. 

How do you believe your business is doing as an OUTthinker?

Success KEY: Differentiating Yourself From Your Competition

Ever since I began studying advertising and business success in college, I’ve relentlessly pursued how businesses’ can differentiate themselves.  When Al Reis and Jack Trout began their books series on Positioning with an article, Industrial Marketing, published in 1969, I’ve voraciously devoured any ideas to help my customers learn to differentiate.  Positioning Systems is named with the intention to coach my customers how to differentiate.

Your businesses’ success depends on your ability to differentiate yourself from the competition. The more unique you are, the longer competitors will become attracted to your success and copy you, the longer you can maintain faster growth and greater profitability.

Calculate Your OUTthinker Score - Assessment Pg 20001Krippendorff developed The Outthinker Score to measure your level of competitiveness. The higher your score, the easier it will be for you to grow fast and profitable. Krippendorff research shows, if you can increase your score over your competition, you will achieve 40% faster growth and/or profitability.

The graphic you see here is the Outthinker Assessment.  If you’d like to have you and your team discover and calibrate your current Outthinker Assessment Score, follow the link to download the form.  Complete the assessment, thinking about how your company is today, not as you want it to be in the future.

Calculate Your OUTthinker Score - Assessment Pg 20002If you are working on a brand-new company you should complete the assessment thinking about what your current plans are. In other words, many of the dimensions ask about what your current thinking or business plan says you would do.

For each of the 8 dimensions, rate your business as being “behind” the competition, “competitive” with the competition, or “different and superior” to the competition. Read each statement. Circle the one that best describes your business. Place your score in the last column.

When I was in radio I recall one of our customers who owned a car wash.   He didn’t feel he truly had any competition.  I asked, “What are customers who are not using your product or service now doing instead?”  Turns out his competition were the people who washed their own cars by hand.  The point?  Ask the question(italics): Your answer, is your competition.

Complete the assessment to determine where your business is. It will be helpful as we continue this discussion on developing a much better plan for next year and your near future.  It will create urgency and focus you on a vital difference your business needs to survive. 

organizational-mindfulness-innovation-Outthink the Competition-1Growth demands Strategic Discipline.

The 3 Strategic DisciplinesPriorityMetrics and Meeting Rhythms help your business dramatically improve your forecasting, and alignment, empowering your team to achieve accelerated growth. These Execution principles pave the road to success on your 3-5 year plan.

Positioning Systems helps your business grow through the Four Decisions: People, Strategy, Execution, Cash.  We’ll help your business achieve Execution Excellence.

Each of the Four Decisions Produces a specific outcome. In our coaching process, we repeat examples and the definitions  of the Four Decisions frequently to make sure our customers remember the value and result each decision produces for your business.












If you’re business is failing to achieve industry leading results in any of these areas, that Decision should be your One Thing.

Want to OUTthink Your Competition?  Does your business need to explore and identify new revenue in today fast changing economic environment?

Positioning Systems helps mid-sized ($5M - $250M) business Scale-UP. We align your business to focus on Your One Thing!  To achieve growth, you need to evolve in today’s rapidly changing economic environment.  Are you avoiding a conversation with yourself on how to can successfully grow your business? Contact to Scale Up your business! Take our Four Decisions Needs Assessment to discover how your business measures against other Scaled Up companies. We’ll contact you.

Outthinker logoOUTTHINKER PROCESS STEP 2 – DISSECT (3 Leverage Points)

Our next step in the Outthinker Process is to select up to 3 leverage points to focus on using the 8 P’s exercise we completed.  Would discovering two to three ideas to help you increase your current revenue by 50 – 100% or more EXCITE YOU?  We share HOW in our next blog.

Topics: strategy, OUTTHINK THE COMPETITION, Strategy Decision, OUTTHINKER SCORE - ASSESSMENT, Outthinker Process

Challenges of Scaling Up a Business 







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1. Priorities: Determine your #1 Priority. Achieve measurable progress in 90 days.

2. Metrics: Develop measurable Key Performance Indicators. 

3. Meetings: Establish effective meeting rhythms. (Cadence of Accountability)  Compounding the value of your priority and metrics. 

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Certified Gazelles Coach

Doug Wick, President

Positioning Systems


The Strategic Discipline Blog focuses on midsize business owners with a ravenous appetite to improve his or her leadership skills and business results.

Our 3 disciplines include:

- Priorities
- Metrics
- Meeting Rhythms

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