Michael Dell has made a number of changes to his company since he returned to the company he founded. He broke open the direct sales model to introduce Dell computers to retail sales outlets like Wal-Mart and soon Best Buy and reduced his workforce by 10 percent, both moves that have helped the company’s bottom line. However, Dell lacks some of the product offerings of competitors like Apple and HP. There is a rumor that Dell will soon introduce a smartphone, a move that has been suggested by a number of writers and one that could help transform Dell from a computer manufaturer into one that sells in the wider consumer electronics market.

Dell has recently entered another market niche with the introduction of its new Tablet PC, the Latitude XT. One of the features that will set the XT apart from most of the tablets on the market is its ability to accept the touch of a finger as an input device in addition to the pen that other tablets use for input. Unfortunately, Dell has been sued by Typhoon Touch Technologies for patent infringement for technologies having to do with their new Tablet PC.

One of the axioms of the business world is that if you are not moving forward, you are in effect falling behind as everyone else is trying to move forward. Although Dell seemed stagnant when its founder was not leading the company, it was profitable for most of that time, but it seemed to be resting on its laurels. The key difference seems to be that Michael Dell is willing to make moves and risk mistakes in order to keep his company moving forward in one of the most competitive industries in the world.

If you were Michael Dell, what new products would you introduce to keep yourself on top?


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