“My test for whether a stated choice is actually a strategic choice is whether or not the opposite of the choice is stupid on its face.
For example, the opposite of the choice to be customer-centric is to ignore customers entirely, which is stupid on its face.
Since strategy is the act of making distinctive choices that position your organization uniquely to win, by definition a choice the opposite of which is stupid on its face is not a strategy choice.” — Roger Martin
This is why being “better” is not a strategy. Because nobody is claiming to be worse.
If the opposite of our strategy, our position, or our advertising claim doesn’t make sense—or is downright silly—it shows we’re not actually making a choice.
We’re just making noise.
But if someone else could stake out the opposite position, the opposite strategy, or make the opposite claims, then we have something.
We’ve made a choice, which means the customer gets to make a choice.
Which means we can be the very best option for someone in particular.
Not just vaguely “better”, but truly unique.
By making choices that set us apart.