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This is a break off of another discussion on the Glock forum... but I feel that it belongs on this forum more because those with experience with more guns that just Glocks can, I think, better illustrate and argue the point.

Here is a comment that was made, and a response I quoted directly from this month's Harvard Business Review. It is scary in how much it addresses Glock's mindest (and the mindset of their ardent supporters). Let me say up front that I like my Glocks and I am not bashing the company. Business is business and I think we can see some strong trends and where they will likely lead the company.


because that would cost gaston money,
the perfection of glock besides marketing is its the Model T of guns,
85% of parts are interchangeable.
new design and features cost R&D $$$$
"The Model T was introduced in 1908 and over the next two decades the Ford Motor Company sold more than 15 million of these cars. But by 1927 sales had flagged so severely that Henry Ford discontinued the line in order to retool his factories for its successor, the Model A. To make the change, he shut down production for months, at a cost of close to $250 million. This chain of events was disastrous for the company because it allowed Chrysler's Plymouth to gain market share and permitted General Motores to seize market leadership.

Why did Henry Ford, who was such a visionary in the industry's infancy, fail to see tha the Model T was about to run its course and that a smooth transition to a new vehicle was essential? Evidence of his signature mode's declining fortunes was everywhere apparent at the time. But Ford dismissed sales figures documenting the Model T's declining market share, because he suspected rivals of manipulating them. One of his top executives warned him of the dire situation in a detailed memorandum. Ford fired him.

Ford's blindness resulted from a conviction that he knew what customers wanted: basic transportation. He was equally convinced that this desire would never change. His favorite slogan about the Model T-- "It takes you there and it brings you back"--captured this myopic view. What Ford didn't grasp is that every product or service has tow components: the core (the product's primary purpose) and the the augmented (additional functions and features). In every industry the border between the two inevitably shifts oer time.

In 1908 the automobile was mostly core: it got you there and back again.

By the 1920's, however, the world was changing, whereas the Model T wasn't. U.S. consumers had more money and more leisure time. The automobile had become more than a machine; it was a status symbol as well. GM's president, Alfred P. Sloan, Jr., recognized this and responded with the augmented-product strategy. Gm's cars came in a variety of colors, and it's models changed every year.

...Freud himself was a victim of the very knowing-but-not-knowing that he described in others. he kept smoking cigars evern after his oral cancer was diagnosed. Both Ford and Freud were smart, successful men who paid a terrible price for denial. Don't let it devastate your company, too. "

Harvard Business Review, August 2008, "Leaders in Denial"


So I guess we can only hope that Glock is not the Model T of guns. It appears, however, that already they share some basic traits that I'm sure Glock would like to avoid.

Many will likely bristle at this... and that's fair... and I would love to see you prove that Glock is secure in its market position.
 

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That is very interesting and seems to ring true. Great post!
 

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Omnomnom
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Eh. Glock will always have it's place. Same as the 1911 will always have it's place. We are talking about 500 dollars guns in today's economy. Not 500 dollar cars in 1908's economy which is probably 20-30 thousand dollars today.

The fact is that Glock will be around for as long as the other guns out there. However, with more fantastic plastic coming out, they won't be as pronounced as they once were. Think about it. Back in the day every cop carried a Colt or Smith and Wesson Revolver. Now most cops carry Glocks. So there is bound to be something else.

But will their market position fade? I don't think so. They make a product that works. They make a product that has after market support. They make a product that is a household "brand" name. That is the key. When you hear "Glock" you know exactly what it is due to music and the media. "Smith and Wesson" and "Colt" may even solicit a "huh?" from people now a days.

With all that said, I go to General Glocking seldom. It gives me a headache to see guys with 15 different Glocks believing they have 15 different guns.
 

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Yeah, so what?
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I think that GLOCK is already showing signs that they must adapt. Shooters have always demanded new and better products and improvement in products they like. I can only explain their reluctance to field a carbine and true slim single stack to sheer idiocy. They do stuff like that and secure their reign for another 25 years.

The introduction of the SF series shows that GLOCK wanted to listen to the demand for a slimmer pistol.

GLOCK will always command a huge market share because, no argument, they make one hell of a product and the smartest thing that they have ever done is to push pricing for LEO departments. Many are of the opinion that MIL and LEO only use the very best.

That being said, other companies are really re-establishing themselves as a "shooters" company with adjustable backstraps, different styles and offerings, and more ergonomic designs. While these are NOT for everyone, the market is proving that these things are for a huge segment of the shooting public.

Look at S&Ws MP series. This pistol is winning a huge following.
 

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This should be interesting......

companies thats stay successful research and listen to the customer base,
they tend to do well.

When a company fail to evolve,innovate and listen to the customer base , and instead tells the customer what he needs, tey will fail.
Just look at the big 3 USA automakers, they kept pushing SUV's bigger is better , and again like in the 70's they were caught with thier pants down.


As for glock,
great $500.00 pistol that cost $75.00 to produce (Forbes Magazine)
But the biggest innovation since it was introduced has been the SF(still fat) frames.....they could do better.
 

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GLOCK will always command a huge market share because, no argument, they make one hell of a product and the smartest thing that they have ever done is to push pricing for LEO departments. Many are of the opinion that MIL and LEO only use the very best.


I have to politely disagree,
for military , money is not a issue,
they can afford the best.
for police depts, budgets & logistics are very huge concerns.

When glock under bids,has generous buy backs and throws in tons of accessories, its a very large incentive to a Police administrator....great business model,thats glock perfection.
is it the best pistol? thats another topic.
 

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Omnomnom
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When glock under bids,has generous buy backs and throws in tons of accessories, its a very large incentive to a Police administrator....great business model,thats glock perfection.
is it the best pistol? thats another topic.


Very true. When the guys in purchasing are looking at purchasing ANYTHING they look at how much it will be worth when the city/county/state needs to get rid of it. If someone submits a big stating, "When our product is used and worth nothing to you anymore, we'll replace it at XXX price," that is when the purchasing people's erections are clearly visible over the table tops and they sign on the dotted line.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Eh. Glock will always have it's place. Same as the 1911 will always have it's place. We are talking about 500 dollars guns in today's economy. Not 500 dollar cars in 1908's economy which is probably 20-30 thousand dollars today.

The fact is that Glock will be around for as long as the other guns out there. However, with more fantastic plastic coming out, they won't be as pronounced as they once were. Think about it. Back in the day every cop carried a Colt or Smith and Wesson Revolver. Now most cops carry Glocks. So there is bound to be something else.

But will their market position fade? I don't think so.
They make a product that works. They make a product that has after market support. They make a product that is a household "brand" name. That is the key. When you hear "Glock" you know exactly what it is due to music and the media. "Smith and Wesson" and "Colt" may even solicit a "huh?" from people now a days.

Here is my reply to that exact idea in the other forum. Feel free to disagree, but I think it addresses your idea here directly:

The basic graph in economics is the demand supply curve:


If you sell it cheap, then you must sell a high quantity of the item to make desirable returns. The more you charge, the less you need to sell in order to make the same return. There are plenty of situations in which you can charge more for a product and sell more of them... and that is where price is associated with substantially increased quality-- and quality delivered at a price point that is not prohibitively greater than the competition. Glock, should they refuse to innovate, will eventually start seeing some market share "leak" to other companies and other products--in fact, it's already happened over the last 10 years as greater variety has occurred. In this case, they will either need to increase prices or change the basic offering so that they move more volume. The equation is that simple; what they will do in response to maket, however, is always difficult to predict.

*****
As some of my teachers would say " it is readily apparent ". I guess I thought everyone knew that the more you sell, the more you will make. Like you say it's supply and demand.
Again, this is soooooorta true. Let's say Glock sells 1,000 guns per year at $10 per gun (to make it simple). And HK sells 100 guns at $100. On paper, they both made $10,000 over the year. But which company made more profit? This is the part of business economics that most people miss. It depends on the varying factors: how much did it cost to produce them? For raw materials? For marketing campaigns? To distribute? For R&D on future offerings?

Because the market is much different now than when Glock first entered, it is almost certain that they will sell less guns over time if they do not change their offering. There is simply more competition for about the same number of buyers, and the designs and improvements seem to have quite a surging fan base in the market. So if Glock sells less guns, how will they recoup the cost? They could raise prices. Or they could put money into marketing, R&D and product expansion which could help them to regain their market share and sell more guns. But that does not mean they would be any more profitable--in fact, companies who fall behind believing in their own perfection often cripple themselves when the market forces them to catch up. General Motors, Ford, and Chrystler are a few great examples. If Glock does not begin slowly adapting to the market NOW, they will lose their ability to be as profitable LATER. They they may need to raise prices too quickly or roll out radical design adaptations (to capture the imagination of the market once again) too quickly and alienate their base.

Some companies are built to be extremely profitable by only selling a few of their product every year--like Rolex. The fact that it is exclusive and cost prohibitive to 98% of the general marketplace is part of the company's strategy. Other companies are built to survive on a simple volume game. Glock falls into the later type of company--a volume/value competitor. Based on this strategy, they will need to make serious changes in the next few years or they will very certainly lose their current market position and profitability.
 

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Lay Them Waste!
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Here's what I said in another thread ( *paraphrased for niceness, of course. ;) ). IMHO, it bears repeating because, while I respect the products that Glock puts out (IMO, they are the 'AK-47' of handguns), I'm really tired of how they simply ignore the segments of the American shooting populace that they do:
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From what I have seen--copycat--as we used to say in elementary school.

First KelTec now Glock.

Darn shame IMO a once really great American company can't come up with it's own ideas. Seems it all went away with the "who needs more than 10" idea.
What some of us learned after elementary school is that, when it comes to making a profit & producing a good product, copying and IMPROVING on a good idea isn't such a bad thing...

A 'copy-cat' at $144 less than a Glock is a smart 'copy-cat', imo.


Regarding 'origional ideas', seems like the boys over at Glock don't mind borrowing other's ideas either:
[link] http://poetv.com/video.php?vid=16815

So enough with the hypocritical 'red herring' arguments, OK?

The SR-series is going to be a good series & it will start selling, even if a bit slowly. Ruger is simply (succeeding at) making their product the best it can be. I'm excited about the change, because it corrects what I believe was one of the only REAL (non-red-herring) problems with the new design... the 'gravelly trigger pull'.

What's important ( and what I think a few of you Glock boys are probably worried about
) is that it seems Ruger is more than willing to #1, listen to their prospective customer's desires, and #2, be innovative...

Can someone please show me an utterly concealable .380 GLOCK design for sale here in the states? I think not. But I can show you one from Ruger, Kahr, Bersa and Kel-Tec.

Can someone please show me an utterly concealable, ergonomic-friendly GLOCK design made, specifically, for concealed carry? Nope. But I can show you several from the likes of Walther, Kahr, and (very soon) from Ruger...

The 'compact' model offered by Glock is only slightly better than a brick... and you can fuhgettabout trying to put CT sights on the thing... :miff:

Can any of you show me a GLOCK that doesn't have the ergonomics of a 2"x4", period? Nope. It'sw something the end user has had to, up until now, train around and/or simply deal with.

I say screw that. For the money I'm spending on their product ($500+), I feel that I should be able to get a pistol that fits my hand better... and I can. Provided I'm willing to go with another brand.

I mean honestly, Glock's supposed 're-design' of their guns' grips was a joke. :impatient: On the other hand, I can show you several well-thought-out designs from several makers...including RUGER.

The last time Glock was considered 'innovative', was when the '19' hit the market... in the early 80's was it? Hellllo? Anyone home over at Glock? Time to wake up and start paying attention!

C'mon. The 1976 Ford F-150 & Chevy Blazer were great vehicle designs... FOR 1976. Imagine if they had just quit making changes & coming up with new ideas ( *some being COPIED ideas ) over all that time. Where would they be now?

All this just goes to show that if you sit on your butt for too long, somebody's gonna end up beating you at your own game. Looks like the next time Glock is gonna make any sort of effort to come out with something origional, their flag-ship, plastic-fantastic design will be as old as, AND as copied as Colt's Single Action Army.
 

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The last time Glock was considered 'innovative', was when the '19' hit the market... in the early 80's was it? Hellllo? Anyone home over at Glock? Time to wake up and start paying attention!
In Glocks defense..... They did re-design their original website 2 years ago. :rofl:

And the Glock Carbine will hit the market any day now :tongueout:
 

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The Resistance
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Eh. Glock will always have it's place. Same as the 1911 will always have it's place. We are talking about 500 dollars guns in today's economy. Not 500 dollar cars in 1908's economy which is probably 20-30 thousand dollars today.
The Model T sold for $825 in 1908. Using the consumer price index to calculate that into today's dollars, that would be $19.176.81. Pretty close, beefums. :thumbsup:
 

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I think the comparison on market position between the Glock and Model T is completely implausible. Two different markets, two different time periods, two different companies, two different products, etc, etc.
 

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I think the comparison on market position between the Glock and Model T is completely implausible. Two different markets, two different time periods, two different companies, two different products, etc, etc.
I agree. Look at how car technology has advanced in the last century compared to the advancements in gun technology. Gun tech just doesn't change as fast as car technology. Hell, the 1911 still has legions of followers who swear it's the best combat handgun (they may be right, as there are very valid points in their argument). No one with any credibility is claiming the model T is still the best.
 

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People have said that about Glock when the XD came out and when The S&W M&P came out and yet Glock has yet to fade away.

I have yet to see a M&P or a XD in the hands of someone protesting halfway around the world. Q-tips have been the same for decades, and yet they still sell. The AK-47, the BHP, and the 1911 are old designs, yet you still see them everywhere, the glock is in that league. Flash in the pan handguns will come and go but glock will be around for a long time.
 
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