Know the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors. As much talk as it’s getting, you know that Mad Men is on to something when it keeps racking up the Emmy nominations. In a recent episode the main character, Don Draper, uses a ruse to throw the competition off his trail. By making the rival company think he’s disregarding the rules, he causes them to follow his supposed plan. They don’t follow the business guidelines so they get “disqualified” from a lucrative contract. The idea that a person is so persuasive, forward-thinking and magnetic that his competitor will copy him is intriguing to us.
Being a leader is one thing, but knowing everyone who is following you is another. Individuals and companies emulating each other is in constant practice. And it is because we like to go with what works, until we can formulate our own methods and practices, we need to follow a proven strategy. It’s up to those of us with foresight to forge new paths. Don Draper is one of these people, are you?