Seth’s Blog: Sunk costs, quitting and the value of your brand

Seth Godin brings up a good point about Hillary changing her brand to win the nomination, and the results of which almost guarantee failure in the general election. I think his analysis of sunk costs is on the money, although being an Obama supporter, I must admit I am pre-disposed to agree with him.

From Seth’s blog:

The new brand, the one that it would take to succeed at this stage, almost guarantees she doesn’t succeed at the next.

And the alternative?

The alternative is to quit. To become a statesman. A respected power broker.

The alternative is to be the trusted advisor, the person who gave up one dream to realize a bigger one, and to build a brand and a lifestyle with long-term leverage.

I think the issue is two fold,  first is whether she can realize a bigger dream at this time. Certainly Al Gore has done so, and I think Bill Clinton up until some serious mis-steps this election was onto something even bigger than his presidency. Bill will recover, that I am sure of. Hillary on the other hand, has her sight on the presidency, to the exclusion of everything else in the short term.  Secondly, the time clock is not on her side. She likely has this one and only opportunity for the presidency. Yet, that doesn’t preclude something bigger down the road.

Sadly, if the rate of earth scorching increases…. there likely will be a point, where there is no spring board left to launch of off in order to foster such a dream. Ie, to go after the big dream, one needs to have a group of people and a vision to rally around. When one goes into earth scorching mode, the vision easily gets obscured, and the rally group decreases in size. In other words, politics as usual, with limited participation… and whether thats enough to make a difference down the road will be something her campaign will need to seriously consider as to her strategy.