Over the past decade, entrepreneurs and CEOs alike have been told over and over that Business Model Innovation (BMI) is key to their companies’ growth. They tend to nod knowingly, rarely asking themselves what their business model is. They just know they have to change it. This lack of clear definition often leads to the creation of conflicting objectives / actions, as various stakeholders will have different ideas of what the business model of their company is, and what innovation should look like. They mean well, they’re just missing the larger picture

Below are 7 ways to define a business model. Each definition creates different strategies for companies, as I shall prove using the supermarket business model as an example.

1. Activities definition

“A business model is a set of interdependant activities spanning firm boundaries”


2. Process definition

A business model is a dynamic process of balancing revenue, costs, organization, and value.

3. Narrative definition

A business model is the narrative of how firms do business

4. Sales definition

A business model is a way to commercialise a product or service

5. Choice definition

A Business model is a result of strategic/tactical choices/decisions

6. Archetype definition

A business model is an archetype of patterns for answering the who-what-how-why questions of a business.

7. Imbalance definition

A business model coexists with competing business models withing an organization, and requires ambidextrous thinking.

This is just a summary of a much more complete article, which you can find by clicking on this link.