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Chapter 29 : Strategic Planning
This chapter highlights the development of distinctive strategic positions by clinical laboratories to differentiate themselves from rivals. A strategic plan must take account of the unique strengths and vulnerabilities of competitive adversaries and will therefore be different for every business. The chapter describes the strategic planning process, and focuses on the organization of the laboratory industry. Competition in any industry is rooted in economics unique to the industry. Competitive pressure is applied not only from existing rivals, but also from potential entrants, substitute products, customers, and suppliers. The chapter describes structural elements of the clinical laboratory industry. The structural elements of the laboratory industry are girders that impose a general shape on any laboratory business strategy. An understanding of a laboratory’s and its competitor's aspirations and capabilities prepares the strategist to identify the distinctive needs or customer groups that her organization can satisfy better than its competitors. The chapter provides a list of strategic positions that is not exhaustive and does not discourage the development of creative new positions. It also focuses on implementing a business strategy. Business authors have identified three types of preventable errors that account for the majority of strategic failures. They are straddling, growth trap, and hubris. In the clinical laboratory industry, a number of distinctive strategic positions are identifiable. These positions allow focused laboratories to maintain a competitive advantage over rivals in a segment of the testing industry the laboratory claims as its own, while ceding the rest of the market to other competitors.
Key Concept Ranking
- Randomized Controlled Trial