Right-to-win exercise

This exercise will help you determine whether your company and your main competitors have a right to win in your market. Consider one of the way-to-play hypotheses that you want to test.

  • Start by deciding which are the two most relevant competitors for this way to play and enter their names into the tool.
  • Identify up to six differentiating capabilities, three key assets and three table-stakes activities and input them into the tool.
  • Rate how you company and your competitors perform — use the sliders to indicate whether you're below par, at par, or above par for each differentiating capability, asset, and table-stakes activity.

The tool will translate your rating into a score: 2 points for each differentiating capability that is above par, 1 point for each differentiating asset that is above par. 1 point for each table-stakes activity that is at par, and -1 point for each element that is below par. For more information, click on the information sign in the top right corner of each frame.

The player with the highest total rating has the right to win in the particular market you are considering.

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Differentiating capabilities system

Start by determining the three to six differentiating capabilities required to be successful with the way-to-play hypothesis you are testing.

Capabilities are the interconnected people, knowledge, systems, tools and processes that form systems to create differentiated value to customers. Be specific, do not just list functions or organizational units. E.g. one of Apple's differentiating capabilities is ‘innovation around customer interfaces to create better communications and entertainment expeflences’.

Then rate how well your company and your two most relevant competitors perform along these capabilities. Based on your rating, the tool will allocate points to the various players: -1 point for ‘below par‘; 0 point for ‘at par’; and 2 points for ‘above par‘.

Differentiating capabilities system

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Differentiating assets

Although assets are not as sustainable as capabilities, we include them in this exercise because they represent criteria that are important to the market.

List up to three differentiating assets (e.g. specific facilities or patents) that support the way-to-play hypothesis you are testing.

Then, for each of these assets, rate how well your company and the two competitors you consider are performing. Based on your rating, the tool will allocate points to the various players: -1 point for ‘below par’; 0 point for ‘at par‘; and 1 point for ‘above par’.

Differentiating assets

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Table-stakes activities

The exercise also considers table-stakes activities. These are activities you need in order to be able to operate, but they do not represent the distinctive capabilities that set you apart from rivals. You don't need to be above par on a table-stakes activity; you just want to be as proficient as the market demands.

List up to three table-stakes activities (e.g. distribution or logistics) that support the way-to-play hypothesis you are testing.

Then, for each of these activities, rate how well your company and the two competitors you consider are performing. Based on your rating, the tool will allocate points to the various players: -1 point for ‘below par’; 1 point for ‘at par‘; and 0 point for ‘above par’ (remember that ‘above par’ performance on a non-differentiating activity means overspending).

Table-stakes activities

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Total rating

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