by Ken Ingram
Strategic change is hard work. It is risky business and requires that you leave your comfort zone. Sometimes even requires that you make decisions that are irrevocable. Strategic change involves an intensive introspection. So are you up to the challenge to take a journey with me into your business? Like any journey you need to start with an understanding of your current situation in order to build on the existing foundation.
We call this an organizational appraisal to discover how well you are performing in eight key areas.
2. Customer service
3. Marketing and Sales
4. Internal systems and processes
7. Innovation and embracing change
8. Community and society
After this is done, the next important step is for you to rate your performance on a scale of 1 to 10. Then decide where you need to improve. Next is to understand how external trends in seven areas could impact your business. Understanding unfolding trends is an essential factor in managing risk.
You need to be a catalyst of change, not adapt after the fact.
Give some thought to these topics:
1. Demographics: what’s happening to the population?
2. Economy: what’s happening locally and regionally?
3. Environment: what’s happening in the environment? that could have an impact on your business?
4. Government: what’s happening in terms of policies? and procedures?
5. Market competition: how is our industry evolving?
6. Society: what’s happening with regards to the attitudes and behaviours of our clients?
7. Technology: how is technology driving where we are currently to where we need to be in the future?
The next step is to unearth what values will guide your businesses behaviours. This may seem obvious, but in the many businesses we have had the privilege to coach, it often proved to be a big eye opener.
The reason is that we often take many things for granted. You may feel that the customer is engaged but you may be surprised to learn that you failed to communicate your core values and the result is, they have taken their business to a less competent supplier. Every business has products and services that provide superior return and some that do not. It may be a good time to take a hard look at your different customers segments and the products/services that you offer and evaluate the return on investment from the 20 / 80 perspective. Evaluate if you are you satisfied with what you are currently doing? If not it may be time to re-examine the market opportunities available today and down the road. Finally, remember that success is a journey, not a destination.
I have taken you quickly through a process that is intended to help you understand where you are now and where you need to go. Now plug those coordinates into the GPS (Goal Planning System) for your business and get to work developing a success plan.
Do you have the audacity to become the master of your own destiny? If so then now is a great time to get started.
Written by Ken Ingram, MQA