Hedgehog Revisited

Last week while delivering a Sage Business Strategy Workshop, the group had a dialogue about Jim Collins’ Hedgehog Principle (aka BHAG). I shot a brief video about the conversation. (Sorry, about the sound sync problem. I am still working some of this technology out.)


I have a couple of questions for you:

  1. What do you think of the idea of looking at the three bisections?
  2. Are the names we have developed correct? If not, what might you propose.

Here is a better view of the diagram. (Au is the periodic table abbreviation for gold. MM is maintenance mode.)


2 thoughts on “Hedgehog Revisited

  1. I think the Maintenance Mode area could also cover the whole range of “compliance only” services that pay the bills, may be profitable, but really don’t get you out of the box or make you special at all.

  2. This is fascinating and I like your take on this.

    I don’t disagree, yet I’m lukewarm on MM – Consulting Blackhole.

    While my suggestion for MM would make David Ogilvy squirm in his coffin, my first thought was Herbert Simon’s term SATISFACE. So MM might be Strategic Satisface, picking an option that is adequate but far from optimal. But, MM still sounds better.

    Stepping back, I even wonder if BHAG should be in the middle. Does a wildly insane number really matter? Isn’t the goal to find the sweet spot, the one where you refuse to leave?

    One last thought. We need a fourth circle that does not touch the other three. Put it anywhere. And label it the Twilight Zone. At least we’re in striving mode when two of the other three circles intersect. But God forbid if we’re in that Twilight Zone circle which reminds me of the doldrums where there are no currents.

    One parting thought. Your names for each intersection of circles reminds me of a destination for small firms looking for their sweet spot. While most firms might bounce around these intersections over time till they reach their sweet spot, I realize the process is not linear, rather messy. And, you and Ron have a great case study on this concept when you did the podcast on The OBK Story. They probably bounced around these intersections, but ultimately found their sweet spot.

    Sorry, I’m rambling. Still, great stuff.

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