Why decathlon? Because it is the most versatile competition in sports – excellence in a decathlon championship is a perfect balance of individual strengths and weaknesses.

…Just like excellence in succeeding in complex business relations with your retailers – let´s see why:

I. Know the metrics: 

in order to understand where and how to improve, you need to understand, how improvement is measured: what are the metrics, what is important, how are results in disciplines combined etc.

…Learnings for your business

business organisations should know the relevance of aspects of your company´s offering from the target group´s perspective: avoid the risk of thinking “inside-out” – rather consider your target group´s opinion (outside-in). This saves costs and time!

II. Learn from your competitors:

In decathlon, just like in all Olympic disciplines, the comparison with your direct competitors is what defines your performance. Thorough analysis is necessary.

…Learnings for your business

know your competitors – outperform them in the disciplines which really count. Just like in sports: analysis is a necessity because at first you need to know where to compete: what´s important to the target group (Consumers or Retailers) and where are strategic opportunities.

III. Know your competitive strengths and weaknesses:  

no one is equally talented in all 10 disciplines – therefore it is important to know where you are good at and where your weaknesses are.

…Learnings for your business

be aware of your competitive strengths and weaknesses – from a consumer as well as a retailer perspective. To achieve this you should ask your target audience for an evaluation of your performance in direct comparison with your competitors. This could be on brand/ products issues (consumers) or on business relation topics (retailers).

IV. Focus on most important skills 

define an optimized to-do list based on points 1-3: either improve your competitive strength or close the gap in your competitive weaknesses.

…Learnings for your business

take the insights on your performance in a competitive context as well as the importance of aspects of your offering into account, discuss findings with involved business functions, align with your strategy – and roll out an action plan!

V. Keep going for continuous improvement: 

check and analyse the results and development you achieve. Consider your competitors´ developments. Try to find out the drivers and barriers of your competitive performance.

…Learnings for your business

measure developments by asking target groups for feedback on a regular basis, e.g. once a year.

Let´s stay in the business world: we know, it´s easy to nod reading the list above and thinking about consumers.

However: when it comes to your more complex (and most often more important) target audience, your retail partners, this is not the same thing:

There are seven “disciplines” that need to be handled in order to succeed in business relations with your retailers:

  • Sales (of course!): KAM / Field force
  • Supply Chain/ Logistics
  • Customer Service (B2B)
  • Trade Marketing/ POS excellence
  • Category Management
  • Consumer Marketing (are your campaigns generating traffic/ effective call-to-action?)
  • Strategic Business Relations

There is more than one concrete competence in each of those seven disiplines. E.g. in Supply Chain: a brand has to offer a high service level, high repeat order capability, deliver the orders on time and delivery deadlines have to match retailers´ requirements.

For this purpose benchex developed the Retail Barometer© :


Gain more transparency on your and your competitors´ performance from your retailers´ perspective.

We help identifying your competitive strengths and weaknesses based on a app. 45 item questionnaire covering all seven business disciplines above. Based on the retail insights, we detect your company´s pain-points and support developing an action plan. Results are checked on a regular basis.

Simple Share Buttons