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The hidden perils of benchmarking

Context, culture and internal interactions that create successful outcomes can be difficult to discern and are often impossible to replicate.

While aspiring to offer Apple's exceptional customer service is laudable, enormous time and corporate resources could be wasted by a company in an unrelated industry attempting to emulate Apple's strategy.

EVERY business competes. Companies use benchmarking, by comparing key performance metrics, as a way to determine where they stand competitively and to identify ways they can improve. It is widely practised and enthusiastically embraced. But does it deliver, and is the emphasis well placed?