Today saw the announcement of yet another mobile phone OS. Another contender for third place. It blows my mind that organizations go into the ring to fight for anything else but becoming NUMERO UNO.
How uninspiring is it if you are the CEO and ask your team to put up the fight of their lives to become third (at best)?
It’s sad, just sad.
People will follow you if you challenge the status quo, if you aim to make things better, if you’re out to kill it.
Nobody wants to become number three — especially not in a market where number one usually gets 60–70% of the market, number two somewhere in the 30% and number three, four, five are complete also-runs.
Nike’s motto when they just started (and their marketshare was essentially nonexistent in an industry which was completely dominated by Adidas) was:
And crush they did.
THAT is how you put up a fight. Not by aiming to become number three.
P.S. John Lilly wrote a wonderful short post about this when RIM publicly declared that they will become “the third OS”.