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Harvard Business Review on Rebuilding Your Business Model by Harvard Business Review

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Finding Your Next Core Business

by Chris Zook

IT IS A WONDER HOW MANY management teams fail to exploit, or even perceive, the full potential of the basic businesses they are in. Company after company prematurely abandons its core in the pursuit of some hot market or sexy new idea, only to see the error of its ways—often when it’s too late to reverse course. Bausch & Lomb is a classic example. Its eagerness to move beyond contact lenses took it into dental products, skin care, and even hearing aids in the 1990s. Today B&L has divested itself of all those businesses at a loss, and is scrambling in the category it once dominated (where Johnson & Johnson now leads). And yet it’s also true that no core endures forever. Sticking with an eroding core ...

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