IX. Positioning the Company – Observing the Competition

Sun Tzu said: 23. When there is dust rising in a high column, it is the sign of chariots advancing; when the dust is low, but spread over a wide area, it betokens the approach of infantry.  When it branches out in different directions, it shows that parties have been sent to collect firewood.  A few clouds of dust moving to and fro signify that the army is encamping. 24. Humble words and increased preparations are signs that the enemy is about to advance.  Violent language and driving forward as if to the attack are signs that he will retreat. 25. When the light chariots come out first and take up a position on the wings, it is a sign that the enemy is forming for battle.

In business: 23. The best way to understand what the competition is doing is to observe and communicate with your customers’ representatives. 24. Humble words and increased preparations are signs that the competitor is about to advance. Violent language and driving forward as if to the attack are signs that he will retreat. 25. When the competition makes its first inroads into our small customers, it is a sign it is forming for a campaign.

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