How do you define the business you are in right now, and how should you define it to be market-driving?
Through a handy tool called the the Accordion Chart. As detailed in my book, Slingshot: Re-Imagine Your Business, Re-Imagine Your Life, The Accordion Chart is an illustrative process that enables the flexible exploration of market spaces that an organization currently resides in and should look to occupy. It illuminates the full spectrum of an offering’s positioning from its core utility to its most general application. It is called an Accordion Chart because as the musical instrument, it is collapsible, so that it can be used to flexibly look across, combine and integrate various gradations of market detail.
Here’s my latest example of Accordion Chart application which describes how electronics maker Sharp is shaping its future by finding connections with seemingly totally unrelated businesses. Via BusinessWeek:
Sharp, known for its televisions, actually has its origins in mechanical pencils. Its future may rest on a business distant from either of those: growing strawberries in the deserts of Dubai.[Image via Ping Ming Health.]