Identifying particular value chains that have the potential to compete globally should boost output and incomes. The challenge is to achieve this in value chains incorporating large numbers of small firms and microenterprises, and who are also in a position to benefit. This paper offers a step-by-step practical guide to intervention design for achieving competitiveness that benefits the poor. First industries are selected with potential for competitiveness, then a value chain analysis is carried out. A strategy is developed to improve competitiveness and achieve an equitable distribution of benefits, and an action plan is devised to achieve this strategy. Finally a system of performance monitoring and impact assessment is needed to evaluate the effectiveness of interventions.