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Strategic Foresight for Collaborative Exploration of New Business Fields

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To ensure long-term competitiveness, companies need to develop the ability to explore, plan, and develop new business fields. A suitable approach faces multiple challenges because it needs to (1) integrate multiple perspectives, (2) ensure a high level of participation of the major stakeholders and decision-makers, (3) function despite a high level of uncertainty, and (4) take into account interdependencies between the influencing factors. In this paper, we present an integrated approach that combines multiple strategic-foresight methods in a synergetic way. It was applied in an inter-organizational business field exploration project in the telecommunications industry.

Published in: Business, News & Politics

Strategic Foresight for Collaborative Exploration of New Business Fields

  1. 1. Strategic Foresight for Collaborative Exploration of New Business FieldsBased on T. Heger, R. Rohrbeck, Strategic Foresight for collaborative exploration of new business fields, Tec. Forecast. Soc. Change (2011), doi:10.1016/j.techfore.2011.11.003 Tobias Heger Prof. Dr. René Rohrbeck Tobias Heger • Universität Potsdam • Chair for Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship Prof. Dr. René Rohrbeck • Aarhus University • Business and Social Sciences
  2. 2. The use of foresight methods promises to overcome commonproblems when entering new business fields. Problems when entering business fields Needed abilities when entering business fields   Information is not detected   Integration of multiple perspectives   Top management lacks the ability to access the   Integration of key stakeholders throughout the economic potential process   Information is filtered by middle management   Top-management visibility or top-management participation   Complex company structures trigger inertia A combination of strategic foresight methods can help to overcome the challenges by …   … combining an external trend analysis with an internal analysis   … facilitating the strategy-formation process   … supporting strategic decision making   … moderating innovation planning Tobias Heger • Universität Potsdam • Chair for Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship Prof. Dr. René Rohrbeck • Aarhus University • Business and Social Sciences
  3. 3. Our methodology draws from several guiding frameworks to addressthe main dimensions of new fields. Our foresight methdology Elements of guiding frameworks Dimension Targeted elements Porter‘s 5 forces Business Business (method) modelling planning Product •  Value proposition •  Value proposition •  Technology plan properties •  Relative product advantage •  Customer •  Product positioning segments (Use-cases) •  Targeted market segment •  Key activities •  Strategic fit •  Key resources •  Customer expectations Competitor •  Up- and downstream partners •  Rivalry among existing •  Key partners •  Competition analysis •  Industry growth and profitability competitors •  Strategic position •  Competitors’ strategies •  Bargaining power of (Value Network, •  Rivalry, competitive-ness and new buyers MACTOR) competitors •  Bargaining power of •  Power structures suppliers •  Convergences and divergences of •  Threat of new market interests entrants Market analysis •  Environmental conditions (political, •  Threat of substitute •  Industry analysis (Scenario regulatory, and sociological) products and services and trends •  Market and technology trends and •  Target market Analysis) drivers •  Risk assessment •  Future market configurations Financial •  Production costs •  Financials •  Customers’ willingness to pay •  Revenue stream analysis •  Sales estimates •  Cost structure (Target Costing) •  Revenue estimations •  Market potential Tobias Heger • Universität Potsdam • Chair for Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship Prof. Dr. René Rohrbeck • Aarhus University • Business and Social Sciences
  4. 4. Five methods are combined to answer the key questions that emerge when exploring new business fields. Product idea, emerging technologies, first ideas on product advantage Development of new business field 1 Final business Use cases field validation What are the key product properties?2/3 Who are the Has the 5 actors in the value New new business network? What are Business field the potential to their interests, how Fields become financially Value Network & will they behave? viable? MACTOR How will the market of the Target Costing new business field evolve? What are trends and barriers? 4 Scenario Analysis Tobias Heger • Universität Potsdam • Chair for Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship Prof. Dr. René Rohrbeck • Aarhus University • Business and Social Sciences
  5. 5. The consecutive use of the methods exploits synergies in the datacollection and evaluation. Method Re-use of data Targeted elements1 •  Value proposition •  Product functions •  Value proposition •  Value proposition Product properties •  Product functions •  Targeted market •  Product functions •  Value proposition (indicating relevant segments •  Customer actors) •  Customer expectations •  Relative product advantage expectations •  Market potential •  Product positioning •  Targeted market segment •  Product Use Cases positioning •  Strategic fit 2 •  Up- and down- •  Up- and down- •  Up- and down- Competitor analysis stream stream stream •  Up- and downstream partnerships partnerships partnerships •  Interdependences •  Interdependences partnerships Value among actors among actors •  Interdependencies among actors Network •  Industry growth & profitability 3 •  Competitor strategies •  Rivalry, potential •  Competitor strategies •  Rivalry, potential market entrants, •  Rivalry, potential market market entrants, competitiveness entrants, competitiveness competitiveness •  Power structures •  Power structures •  Power structures •  Convergences & •  Convergences & divergences of interest MACTOR divergences 4 Market analysis •  Environmental conditions •  Market and tech. drivers Scenario •  •  Future market configurations Strategies to meet future Analysis market conditions 5 Financial analysis •  Production costs •  Allowable retail price Target •  •  Sales & revenue estimates Market potential Costing Tobias Heger • Universität Potsdam • Chair for Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship Prof. Dr. René Rohrbeck • Aarhus University • Business and Social Sciences
  6. 6. Throughout the analyses collaboration and creativity methodsenhance the quality of results. Face-to-Face http:// Desk Research Meetings Panel Discussions Publications Workshops ? Questionnaires Conference Calls Expert Knowledge Mailing Lists @ Interviews Tobias Heger • Universität Potsdam • Chair for Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship Title Prof. Dr. René Rohrbeck • Aarhus University • Business and Social Sciences of
  7. 7. The methodology provides a multi-level analysis, facilitatescollaboration and is adaptable to specific needs. Project results Facilitation of collaboration   Identification of product properties for new   Regular face-to-face meetings and panel markets discussions foster quality   Description of the relevant actors   Interactive workshops facilitate management support   Explication of emerging alliances and conflicts   Use of collaboration tools increase project communication efficiency   Insights on drivers, barriers and showstoppers   Team building activities increase commitment   Evaluation of the financial viability and cost   Continuous alignment and visualization of structures results and expectations ensure adherence of time limits   Recommendations on how to enter the new market Tobias Heger • Universität Potsdam • Chair for Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship Prof. Dr. René Rohrbeck • Aarhus University • Business and Social Sciences

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