Exploiting Chaos

150 Ways to Spark Innovation During Times of Change

150 Ways to Spark Innovation During Times of Change - an award-winning business innovation book by Jeremy Gutsche, CEO of Trend Hunter

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by more than 20%. Super. I could already imagine my future. I'd get to tell my friends, "I only shrank the business by 20% . . . Yeah, I'm that good." For- tunately, crisis creates opportunity: 1: Crisis reduced our time to market: We no longer had to spend a year proving that our ideas were perfect; we only had to prove they were better than the alternative—which was nothing. 2: Crisis let our team coordinate & cut through red tape: Approvals were faster. Cooperation was greater. 3: Crisis enhanced our tolerance for risk: Without a product, we were forced to push traditional boundaries. 71 4: Crisis forced us to relearn what our customers wanted: We used to be complacent knowing our 5.99% card was the lowest rate in the coun- try. But crisis forced us to rethink what customers wanted. Why did Cana- dians hate slightly higher rates, like 6.99%? This led us to an important insight. Our Canadian customers didn't think about their rates as numbers, they thought about whether or not their rates were fair. Numeric pricing like "5.99%" makes it difficult to understand how much the bank is actually making. But relative pricing, like "Prime +2," is easier to evaluate. (In Canada, Prime is a base rate used to price mort- gages.) By repositioning our card with "Prime +2" pricing, our card was essentially the same, but demand increased. Instead of declining by 20%, monthly bookings tripled and the business grew to a $1 billion portfolio. You can use crisis to defeat the enemies of innovation.

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