The 5 P's to Ensure Success In A Recovery
After three of the toughest years in the lives of growth-oriented CEOs, the signs are finally pointing towards sustained growth opportunities. While most of the headlines are still very negative, the underlying fundamentals show new opportunities for companies ready to make the transition.
While our research clearly indicates that we are out of "The Great Recession" which has provided the narrative for the last three years, this recovery will not be anything like the "recoveries" of the last 20 years.
We've summarized the key ingredients for succeeding in a recovery to five points, or The 5 P's. Now is the time to give yourself a check-up in each area, and ensure that you are prepared to create a newer, bigger future.
As I've written before, the central lesson from the last three years is that yesterday's (and today's) "good" is no longer good enough in the future. Now is time to make sure that you are ready to take advantage of the recovery and create a competitive advantage that will allow you to gain greater rewards than at any time in the last 30 years.
While it's become trite to say that people are your most important asset, it's no less true. In my experience working with more than 1,000 small and mid-market companies the biggest reason businesses fail to take advantage of opportunities is because they don't have the right people in the right seats. While staffing experts are reporting that the pool for (really) good talent is getting increasingly competitive, it is not too late to upgrade your talent.
The biggest weakness in small and mid-market sales and marketing efforts is that there is no underlying process to guide and improve efforts. The difference between great sales and marketing organizations and average ones (other than the extreme difference in the profit they create) is that great sales and marketing organizations have great sales processes, while average ones rely too heavily on people alone. The really interesting thing is that the organizations with better processes are the ones that attract the best people.
Now, more than ever before, you must go-to-market with a clear, succinct promise that connects to the critical issues that your customers face. In today's drought, with fewer buyers and lower budgets, the only way to ensure that there are premium margins for you is to make sure that your value proposition makes you indispensable. What's more, it's no longer enough to have a superior proposition - it must also be communicated in a superior fashion.
A valuable thought I often share with audiences is, "Just because the fish are jumping in your boat does not mean you are an angler." In the 1990s and early 2000s businesses could succeed without a clear profit formula. As long as volume increased at a fast pace, the underlying flaws with the business model could be masked. Today businesses must - MUST - focus on their core business, and CEOs must understand their underlying profit formula and ensure that their strategies reinforce it.
The worst thing of all to have happened as a result of "The Great Recession" is that CEOs and the people within business took a reactive posture. Many businesses stuck their heads in the sand, while others took a wait and see approach. They cut budgets, sought cover and hoped to wait it out. The result of this inaction was that "growth muscles" atrophied, and businesses got weaker. With new growth opportunities ahead, business must rebuild their muscles, and must go-to-the market instead of waiting for the market to come it it.
Do a quick check on each of the 5 P's. How do you stack up? Can you honestly give yourself an "A" in each category? Now, start brainstorming what you can do to improve your business in each area and ensure that you are one of the winners in the recovery.
If you'd like to learn more about the 5 P's and the actions you can pursue to take advantage of the recovery, we've got two opportunities for you:
· On November 9, 2010 at 2pm EST, we will be hosting a special webinar on The 5 P's. You can read the sidebar for more information. Click Here to Register.
· If you can't make the webinar, you can order our soon to be released report - The 5 P's to Ensure Success in the Recovery. Click Here to Order This Report. (Please note all attendee to the webinar will automatically receive the report.)
Of course, you are always welcome to pick up the phone to ask one of our experts any question or send us an email.