When customers make a purchase decision, they usually put all the information into three boxes, operational aspects like price and durability, product features, and if the offering will fulfill their needs or not. A company to attain market leadership has to deliver exceptionally well in one of these aspects of operational excellence, customer intimacy, and performance superiority and provide fair value on the rest.

If you are asking why not give exceptionally well above fair value in all the three, the answer is every decision you make, the systems you will put in place, the people you hire, what you will measure, everything changes based on which aspect you want to focus on to deliver above fair value. Focusing on all the 3 is the recipe for becoming “lukewarm tea.”

The book The Discipline of Market Leaders by Michael Treacy & Fred Wiersema is a foundational book. The book brings clarity to each of the aspects above with excellent examples. It will provide a lot of clarity on what strategy should be adopted even before starting your company and can potentially save years by offering you a clear strategy compass.

Here is a link to a copy of the summary of the book I am building for my future reference.