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A Proposal to Succeed

Naturally we strive to succeed in business and our professional lives. I propose business success is driven by three components: Understanding and fulfilling customer needs, motivating teams to achieve common goals and embracing technology.

Firstly, assessing customers’ needs to understand how and why the product you sell makes their life better. Knowing why it’s beneficial for a customer to be associated with your brand and the feeling this association provides. It’s worth taking a moment to consider if your current strategy speaks to this and determine if the work your team is producing creates this emotional connection and benefit. Listening to customer feedback is important but should not be the only driver as you determine your customers’ needs. Look to anticipate their needs by offering what you believe to be a real value add, making their lives better.

Secondly, selecting the team that will deliver this product - observing their engagement and capability to perform the tasks, as well as assessing their motivation and cultural fit to the business. This observation and assessment can take place on an ad-hoc basis, but should be part of formal reviews, allowing for constructive criticism of both management and staff, setting expectations for future pay rises, promotions, demotions or performance improvement plans. If you find any of these four areas to be lacking some reflection is needed. Results could show that you’ve hired incorrectly e.g. the person’s not capable to perform the role, or simply does not fit the business culture. Alternatively, there’s a misalignment on goals resulting in poor motivation and engagement.

Thirdly, embracing technology as it shifts business ratios such as sales per channel, marketing segment spend, customer engagement or speed to market. As one introduces more technology into the business, and customers do in their own lives, you need not necessarily remove a channel, but rather shift your allocation of resources and expectations. This shifting is often the challenging part as it requires change at all levels.

In summary: A business proposal to succeed: 1) ensure your strategy fulfills customers’ needs, 2) motivate your team towards common goals and 3) embrace technology as customers, and businesses, change.

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