Doing More Together Than Alone

by Jay Deragon on 09/23/2011

Alfie Kohn, author of  No Contest:The Case Against Competition writes:

 Noncooperative approaches . . . almost always involve duplication of effort, since someone working independently must spend time and skills on problems that already have been encountered and overcome by someone else.

Sound familiar?  Look around and in almost every industry you see competitors beating each other into the ground while reducing the end value to the customer and increasing cost.

Julie Browser, of IBM writes “The traditional concept of business as a “winner takes all” contest is giving way to a realization that in the networked economy, companies must both co-operate and compete. Termed “co-opetition,” this new perspective requires companies to create business strategies that capitalize on relationships in order to create maximum value in the marketplace.

“Co-opetition”– a model in which a network of stakeholders co-operate and compete to create maximum value — is one of the most important business perspectives of recent years. Internet and mobile technologies have made it even more necessary for companies to both co-operate and compete, by enabling relationships through information sharing as well as integrating and streamlining processes.

In today’s networked economy, co-opetition is a powerful means of identifying new market opportunities and developing business strategy.

Take the private aviation industry.  Everyday thousands of private jets fly empty. Those who charter jets pay the round trip cost of a jet whether they use it round trip or not.  The process creates what is known as “empty legs”. Empty legs are usually one way trips flying empty and yet already paid for by somebody.  Most Private operators try and sell the empty leg at full charter prices and thus few ever sell an empty leg.  Empty legs represent seats unused leaving revenue in the air.

What if these private jet operators shared all their empty legs with the public and sold seats on those legs?  By cooperating they would expand their markets, create value for consumers and generate more revenue.  But many won’t do that because they view themselves as competing with each other rather than cooperating.  In the meantime revenue is lost to the air. In this case they end up doing less alone rather than more together.

Business is both competition and co-operation

In the past, people saw business as a “winner takes all” or “zero-sum” game. The networked economy moves away from these purely competitive plays to recognize cooperative relationships that leverage value created by those in the network. Competition — the other aspect of co-opetition — occurs after businesses have created new value in the market and expand the value proposition through quality and creativity.

Social Flights business model is about creating cooperation with private jet operators with the aim of expanding the market and creating new value for all parties involved. For it to work the suppliers must cooperate in order to gain increased market share through new value offered to travelers who in turn create new revenue.

So, will you consider cooperating?свети георги


Virtual Office September 27, 2011 at 1:48 am

Every company or business need to collaborate employees in order to decide how to approach a task and to ensure that everyone knows what their role is. It is an essential feature of any workplace. Nice post

Dean September 23, 2011 at 7:00 am

Great idea about operators sharing info on empty legs. Its been tried, but never works becasue the operators feel like they are competing, and maybe even giving up their clients. For this concept to work, an operator have to agree that its best to provide an empty leg to their client on someone elses plane, as opposed to flying them on their own aircraft. Tough on two front: (1) they are giving their client information to another operator, and (2) they leave revenu on the table and their aircraft in the hanger, instead of flying. Greenjets has another approach – it optimizes the demand side, creating flights that were not possible without Greenjets. They sell seats, so client know in advance they are not booking or paying for an entire aircraft. Then they comingle the clients on aircraft, making better use of the seats, than if one client booked the plane. The seats are guaranteed, and not dependant on anyone else joining the flight – some schemes try to match, or sell the plane and then try to fill it up – not Greenjets… again, the seats and seat prices are guaranateed. So, the operators ARE flying more… with Greenjets, they fly groups of 1s and 2s buying seats on private jets, when the likely would not have flown private at all… why pay for the whole plane when you are 1 or 2 people? Answer with Greenjets is, you no longer have to…

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