The Future of Competition: Co-Creating Unique Value With Customers

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Harvard Business Press, Dec 30, 2013 - Business & Economics - 272 pages
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In this visionary book, C. K. Prahalad and Venkat Ramaswamy explore why, despite unbounded opportunities for innovation, companies still can't satisfy customers and sustain profitable growth. The explanation for this apparent paradox lies in recognizing the structural changes brought about by the convergence of industries and technologies; ubiquitous connectivity and globalization; and, as a consequence, the evolving role of the consumer from passive recipient to active co-creator of value. Managers need a new framework for value creation. Increasingly, individual customers interact with a network of firms and consumer communities to co-create value. No longer can firms autonomously create value. Neither is value embedded in products and services per se. Products are but an artifact around which compelling individual experiences are created. As a result, the focus of innovation will shift from products and services to experience environments that individuals can interact with to co-construct their own experiences. These personalized co-creation experiences are the source of unique value for consumers and companies alike.

In this emerging opportunity space, companies must build new strategic capital--a new theory on how to compete. This book presents a detailed view of the new functional, organizational, infrastructure, and governance capabilities that will be required for competing on experiences and co-creating unique value. C. K. Prahalad is the Harvey C. Fruehauf Professor of Business Administration at the University of Michigan Business School and co-author of the landmark best seller, Competing for the Future. His research, for over twenty years, has consistently focused on "next" practices. Venkat Ramaswamy is the Michael R. and Mary Kay Hallman Fellow of Electronic Business and Professor of Marketing at the University of Michigan Business School. His research focuses on new frontiers in co-creating value.

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The future of competition: co-creating unique value with customers

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According to this turgid volume of business metaphysics, dwindling profit margins caused by intensified competition, a glut of commodity production and knowledgeable, web-empowered consumers will ... Read full review

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I found The Future of Competition: Co-creating Unique Value with Customers to be an easy read and interesting for anyone from a new MBA student to anybody that interested in business. C.K.Prahalad, who is considered as one of today's top management gurus, presented a new idea that business competitions have started to get tougher because customers nowadays not only have more access to the information but they also network and discuss products with one another and become more powerful factors in business transactions. This paradigm shift leads to the demand for higher customization and transparency and it is very important for managements at every level to recognize and adapt to this new trend.
In order to stay competitive in the world of informative and technology, the co-creating value was presented as a new approach for corporate managements that the company must shift from a firm-centric perspective to an experience and co-creation centric which we can see this change throughout the markets nowadays. Companies are no longer focusing on single transaction and by means they want to get to know each of their customers to create a personalize relationship with each of them. Many examples of practices throughout his book are not only limited to tangible products as he represented examples in the service sectors such as ER room as well.
In a new co-creating value environment, managers of large and medium organizations can relate to customers through information systems that is available in real-time and must be able to response to that interaction quickly if needed. Further in the book, the authors develop the idea of the keys building blocks of co-creation or DARTóDialogue, Access, Risk Assessment and Transparency in more details.
I would recommend anyone to read this book. The written style in the book is neither heavy nor too technical. Most ideas were elaborated through real scenarios which can be quite entertained and insightful for some readers. Though many examples might seem to be outdated or already in place in todayís world, the core value of co-creation still remains true. Hopefully sometime in the near future, we will see customers and companies collaborate and create a better market place for everyone.


Building Blocks of
The CoCreation Experience
Experience Innovation
Experience Personalization
Experience Networks
Building New
Manager as Consumer
Rapid Knowledge Creation
Strategy as Discovery
Building New Capabilities
Aids to Exploration

The Market as a Forum

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Popular passages

Page 252 - Communities of creation: managing distributed innovation in turbulent markets", California Management Review, summer, VOL.43, NO.4, pp.24-54, 2000 4.
Page 251 - Marks and Spencer and Zara: Process Competition in the Textile Apparel Industry.

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About the author (2013)

C.K. Prahaladis the Harvey C. Fruehauf Professor of Business Administration at the University of Michigan Graduate School of Business Administration and Chairman of the Board of Praja, a technology management company in San Diego. He lives in San Diego but travels extensively.

Venkat Ramaswamyis a professor of marketing at the University of Michigan Graduate School of Business Administration. He lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

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