Explain the concept of competitive intelligence. Competitive intelligence (CI) helps managers assess their competition and their vendors in order to become more efficient and effective competitors. Intelligence is analyzed information, and it becomes decision-making intelligence when it has implications for the organization. By helping managers assess their competition and vendors, CI leads to fewer surprises. CI allows managers to predict changes in business relationships, guard against threats, forecast a competitor’s strategy, and develop a successful marketing plan. The Internet and databases accessed via the Internet offer excellent sources of CI. Company personnel, particularly sales and service representatives, are usually good sources of CI. Many companies require their salespersons to routinely fill out CI reports. Other external sources of CI include experts, CI consultants, government agencies, UCC filings, suppliers, newspapers and other publications, the Yellow Pages, and trade shows. Questions 6.1 Why do you think that CI is so hot in today’s environment? 6.2 Prepare a memo to your boss at JetBlue Airlines to outline why the organization needs a CI unit. 6.3 Form teams of three students. Each team must choose a firm in the PC manufacturing industry and then go to the firm’s Web site and acquire as much CI as possible. Each team will then prepare a five-minute oral presentation on its findings.