“1. What percentage of your time is spent creating something new, as opposed to working out operational details or protecting the past?
2. List five ways that you can beat your competition. How could they beat you?
3. If you were entering your industry as a startup, how would you break the mold to beat the incumbents?
4. What elements of the past or status quo are you clinging to? What do you need to let go of?
5. How could placing your bets earlier drive your bottom line?
6. List five ways your company is stagnating; for each of these, list at least two ideas addressing how you can break through those barriers.”
Josh Linkner in his book “Disciplined Dreaming: A Proven System to Drive Breakthrough Creativity.”
How do the questions above relate to your OSS situation? A few follow-up questions along those lines might be:
1. What percentage of operational processes are new versus improving the efficiency of the old? On your product roadmap, is there an inflection point when you stop evolving the old and create something without legacy?
2. Simpler/easier? Faster (to deploy)? Cheaper? Better Customer Service? More customer-centric? More open? More valuable analytics? Ensuring more reliable data?
3. What legacy do the incumbents have that hold them back? What are the consistent bug-bears customers have with the incumbents? What niches do the incumbents not fill?
4. It’s easy to patch the existing, but is the legacy nearing the point of being superseded?
5. Are any competitors closing the innovation gap? What would it take to consolidate a fragmented market and/or develop a strong leadership position?
6. Is your business model one of a product, services or combination of both? What is on your roadmap? What is on your customers’s roadmaps? Are you helping your customer to sell to their customers? What research are you doing to identify a way of dominating the market?