It’s possible for a recently born CI organization to get trapped in a thankless, low-level support role. Fortunately, it’s also quite possible for it to define itself as a key player in setting strategy. That’s why you need to recognize factors such as these that can weaken the CI function:
Chasing facts instead of doing analysis. If the output of the CI organization is raw intelligence instead of analytical conclusions, its work is more like fetching sticks on command than generating insight.
Lacking a charter. CI organizations, especially fast-developing ones, can fall victim to operating without defined roles, which leaves them vulnerable to directives that are against their own best interest.
Functioning as an answer desk. When CI analysts are constantly occupied by small-scale requests defined by someone else, they are essentially resolving trouble tickets rather than guiding the CI function.
Becoming the guardians of data scraps. Large amounts of disconnected information can tempt a CI manager to focus on building a repository, portal, or wiki, trading high-value analysis for a library of trivia.
These danger signs can arise in any organization, diluting the value of CI. If they do, you must act fast to help the CI organization drive competitive strategy, and not just operational tactics. We’ll explore techniques to get you on the right track in an upcoming blog entry – “Five Ways to Make Competitive Intelligence More Intelligent.”
By Sean Campbell
By Scott Swigart
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