1. E-Types and Its Strategy Dilemma:
#Certificate Course on “Strategic Management”
From Copenhagen Business School, Denmark
2. Edgy OR Classical OR Both ?
I. What should be the e-Types strategy be going
II. How should e-Types implement their strategy
3. PART-I. What should be the e-Types strategy be going forward?
The Case: E-Type is a design firm based in Copenhagen with an expanding base
of international clients. Since its inception, it considers itself as ‘extremely
revolutionary’ and has grown through acquiring several smaller firms. With its
passion(adopted phrase)‘smash the world’ e-Type has emerged as a profitable,
successful and ambitious firm, and over a period of time it has established its
brand (prestige) and ensured sufficient cash flow.
Drivers: Its faith and believe in creating an identity of their clients with a value
which extends and discovers the ‘self’ and ‘soul’ beyond the clients’ capacity or
perceptions about themselves. Also, another strong driver is its reluctance to
compromise with its prestige for earning money.
The above narratives clearly depict the strengths of e-Types, which has been
successful in creating a sense of ‘deep delight’ among its clients. With such a
tested and proven ‘competitive edge’, e-Type is recommended to pursue the
Strategy Choice: e-Type should continue to prefer ‘EDGY’ work.
4. PART-I: Introspection on a few given questions:
Q(i) Should they grow-up and broaden their approach to appeal to more clients?
Q(ii) What direction will allow them to fulfill their ambition?
Q(iii) Can they make enough money being Edgy?
Q(iv) Must they broaden their appeal to grow?
(i) E-Types’ designs contain less ‘physical object’ and more ‘intangible part’, so there is
no scope to adopt ‘economies of scale’ to appeal more customers/clients.
(ii) It has to focus on ‘value creation model’ through constant innovation about meaning
of its designs.
(iii) If ‘Vipp’ can sell a trash-bin for $500, which costs only $50, e-Types can similarly
have larger profit margin being ‘Edgy’.
(iv) E-Types shall continue to ‘deepen’ their appeal, not ‘broaden’ its appeal. Because
going to broaden its appeal may dilute its value proposition, which may further widen
the gap between clients’ expectation and their perceived identity through e-Types’
Q(i)How should e-Types implement their strategy going forward?
Q(ii) Should they refuse to work on certain kinds of jobs?
Q(iii) Should they turn some clients down? If so, what kind of clients?
(i) E-Types is recommended to adapt a ‘strategy mix’, which has to borrow insights and
inputs from the following concepts and principles.
1. Mintzberg’s ‘Strategy as Perspective’ and ‘Strategy as Pattern’
2. Eric Clemens’ ‘Hyper-differentiation’ strategy.
3. Advanced differentiation strategy or Sophisticated differentiation strategy.
(ii) Its more than doing some jobs. Its about creating an identity for the clients which
extends beyond their perception and expectation through more and more value
creation. It must refuse jobs that simply demand some ‘traditional/conventional
(iii) The clients who are ‘price sensitive’ and want just ‘something’ conventional with
which they never associate emotionally, can be turned down. Before doing so, e-
Types may engage them in persuasive conversation to sell their ‘idea’. If clients
continue to be stubborn, may be turned down.
6. It has been evident from the given context (e.g. video conversations) that there is considerable discord
among the team members about the radical design. While a few of them were to go with ‘Option-3’ (i.e.
present both and let the client decide), others were reluctant to compromise with their ‘edgy’ design and
their ‘brand or prestige’. Keeping that discord in mind, e-Type is recommended to adopt the following plan
to implement their strategy.
SHORT TERM PLAN: Initiate the process of developing an appropriate culture across organization to
achieve its goal through risk taking behavior, continuous innovation, collective mind etc.
MIDTERM PLAN: To ensure consistency in behavior (pattern), e-Type must bring in necessary structural
and policy changes. Then it has to relook into its quality control program and service contracts.
Simultaneously it has to initiate and undertake training programs to develop skills of employees and shaping
LONG TERM PLAN: Adapting and influencing its position through operational excellence. Along with
several other functional teams, it has to install dedicated teams for ‘Research and Development’, ‘Customer
Relationship Management’, ‘Storytelling and Customer Engagement Programs’ , ‘Marketing and
Advertisement’ etc. Also, it has to ensure that there is enough cross functional team interaction , sharing of
information and learning experience, and exchange of ideas.
Major Focus: Make customers/clients ‘price insensitive’ and ‘continuous innovation to add value to
the meaning of design to create a sense of ‘deep delight’ among the clients.
PART-II: Step-by-Step Plan for Implementing their strategy
7. III: Conclusion:
There is no immediate threat to E-Types. It shall continue with its ‘edgy’
designs. It needs to create a supportive structure and culture in the
organization, where every employee must have a strong sense of belonging,
with a collective mind and risk taking attitude. It shall continuously strive
to adapt and influence its position through effective communication and
storytelling to make prospective clients ‘price insensitive’ and creating a
sense of ‘deep delight’ among them through innovative ways of value
addition to the meaning of designs.