Calibrate your Competitiveness
Stratagem Selected

“The nature of global business competition has been undergoing a radical change and new ways of thinking and acting are required to become and stay effective in this newly defined environment. In Outthink the Competition Kaihan outlines the specific changes underway and provides practical tools to help you adopt a new min-set to link your strategy to key financial indicators for better results. If you do not yet understand the strategic value of being good or how to wield the emerging power of coordination, read this book.”

- Robert Cancalosi,
Chief Learning Officer, GE Healthcare

Books Published by Kaihan

book provides an unusual perspective on business strategy ... Viewing business strategy through this innovative lens can lead a strategist to conceive of competitive options that might not have been otherwise considered."

-David Wenner, retired McKinsey Director



The Outthinker Flash cards


The Outthinker Flash Cards are a tool to arm you with 36 fundamental strategic patterns (e.g., coordinate the uncoordinated, move early to the next battleground) and unlock new, innovative strategies. They are being used now by thousands of executives in over ten Fortune 500 companies to outthink the competition.

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Outthink the Competition (John Wiley, 2012) "Outthinkers" are entrepreneurs and corporate managers with a new playbook. They see opportunities others ignore, challenge dogma others accept as truth, rally resources others cannot influence, and unleash new strategies that disrupt their markets. Outthink the Competition proves that business competition is undergoing a fundamental paradigm shift and that during such revolutions, outthinkers beat traditionalists. Outthink the Competition presents stories of breakthrough companies like Apple, Google, RIM, and Rosetta Stone whose stunning performances defy traditional explanation and will inspire readers to outthink the competition. Core concepts in the book include:

  • Discover the Eight Dimensions of Disruption
  • Learn to play by the Outthinker Playbook
  • Learn to adopt Five Habits of the Outthinker
  • Implement the Outthinker Process

It's time to buck tradition in order to stay ahead. Outthink the competition and uncover opportunities hiding in plain sight.


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Today's global economy is a battleground. To survive and thrive, you'll need every weapon you can get. Microsoft, Sony, and Starbucks use business practices based on the ancient Chinese military text The Thirty-Six Stratagems - now you can, too. Author Kaihan Krippendorff explains how to apply each stratagem to make your business profits soar, such as:

  • Stratagem #1-Kill with a Borrowed Knife: Indirect attacks on your adversaries can catch them off guard.
  • Stratagem #19-Watch the Fire on the Other Shore:
    Companies that temper power with patience will be more competitive in the long run.
  • Stratagem #33-Hide a Dagger Behind a Smile:
    Threatened adversaries resist-trusting ones do not.
    With Hide a Dagger Behind a Smile, you can take on your competitors and win-one battle at a time.

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Innovation is not an option. It is a fundamental requisite of survival. Throughout history, innovative societies have dominated their less creative rivals, and innovative companies, their competition. Yet we remain ineffective in this critical skill because we have been our modern understanding of change, rooted in just a few hundred years of study, ignores insights gleaned thousands of year prior. The Way of Innovation shows how we can use ancient Hindu and Chinese frameworks for change to become more effective innovators by navigating five phases of change:

  • “Metal” – collapse: how to recognize you are stuck
  • “Water” – imagination: how to conceive of new “winning” options
  • “Wood” – emergence: how and when to persist when you produce no tangible results
  • “Fire” – breakout: how to lead your innovation past the tipping point
  • “Earth” – consolidation: how shift into a state of sustainability



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Contrary to commonly held beliefs, strength and resources play minor roles in a company s ability to beat the competition. Instead, the ability to conceive of unorthodox strategies that the competition will choose not to copy is the key to gaining a competitive edge. In "The Art of the Advantage," former McKinsey & Co consultant Kaihan Krippendorff captures a decade of study into corporate conflict. He shows that the fundamental patterns that successful companies have used to outmaneuver their rivals are rooted in a set of ancient Chinese warfare metaphors known as "The 36 Stratagems." "The Art of the Advantage" marries these ancient principles with modern application through graphical depictions, ancient examples, and modern case studies. More than a traditional business book, "The Art of the Advantage" is a manual for systematically outthinking the competition.