Today, virtually all firms generate value in four dimensions in their transactions on markets with counterparties such as customers, personnel, suppliers and investors:
Degree: The firm boosts the counterparty to a relative degree, i.e. higher status, such that the counterparty can "own" a higher position in the "pecking order" within a society, market or organization. For example, Louis Vuitton handbags confer a privileged status on the user by virtue of their elegant design, luxurious image and high-quality craftsmanship.
Dexterity: The firm provides a standard for the counterparty to know how to function in the context of a society, market or organization. For example, the practical styling and all-rounder functionality of the hallmark North Face backpack make it the right choice for almost any activity, business or private, inside or outside, on any given day.
Deed: The firm empowers the counterparty to do specific activities which optimize the circumstances of the moment, exactly fitting to the ever-changing situation of the counterparty. Parties gain a "platform" which can be specifically adjusted to the individual circumstances. For example, the Burberry trench coat is the "platform" which can be fine-tuned to cold or warm weather, business or leisture time, casual or formal look, a fun or earnest state of mind, etc.
Desire: The firm realizes a personal vision for the counterparty to feel that she or he is (becoming) what they want to be in association with other people or feelings in a variety of contexts. For example, Nike sportswear synthesizes the contrasting dictates of sports functionality and fashion design into clothes that become one with the wearers; they can strive for all they want to be in sport and life.
A very small number of firms today generate value for counterparties in a fifth dimension:
Deep-Connect: The firm integrates the essence of the counterparty with the essence of multiple contexts to give meaning to the life of the counterparty. For example, Stella McCartney fashion and accessories connect up many facets of the complex modern woman, while her business runs on rigorous environmental and ethical principles; unusual in the fashion world.