Reopening Restarting Rebuilding, Recovery is likely on your mind. Let us face the facts. business will never Really be the same. It may quite possibly be like it is today for some time. So, it is time to Rethink your business strategy and Reaffirm your business’ direction. There are new opportunities for every business after a disruption like COVID-19. The importance of looking at your business objectively cannot be overstated. Just as important is to reaffirm the reason you are in business in the first place. Confirming and/or Reaffirming your reason, your “Why” will be critical to setting a new direction or strategy. Here is a checklist to work through.
Core Purpose – Your “Why” you give your life to this cause
Core Customer – The “Person” who buys at a premium and loves you.
Core Values – How your team works and trusts together
Core Strengths – How your business sets itself apart from its competition
Core Promises – The commitment your customer embraces
BHAG – Your compelling “Vision” that excites every stakeholder
For many in business, the first answer would be making money. Better yet, creating cash. Profits and cash are the life blood of any business. You cannot live without them. However, profits without purpose becomes a very shallow existence and begs the question; “now what?” Compelling the money maker to DO something meaningful with the money created. When “purpose” is combined with profits, it attracts talent and resources to a meaningful cause that inspires the members and aligns strategic thinking and mission. Creating clarity of purpose motivates individuals and teams to compete and achieve results. In fact, Harvard Business Review data finds “companies with high levels of purpose outperform the market by 5-7% per year, on par with companies with best-in-class governance and innovative capabilities. They also grow faster and have higher profitability.”
Who is that person that you love to serve? The one who buys your most successful product or service and loves to tell everyone about your business. That is your Core Customer! It does not get any sweeter than this. Take time to describe this “real” person of your future in detail. Identify their approximate age, gender, lifestyle, location, habits, interests, associations, and on-line identity that you can reach out to. If you can, center your business energy around how to find and reach more of these customers. Sometimes there will be more than one. If so, repeat the process above until you can envision 80% of your revenue being embraced by your Core Customers.
Identify the important and distinctive characteristics in your business culture that delight the customers you serve and inspires behavior that creates harmony and successful choices. Core Values represent the organizations personality. Hiring and aligning the team with Core Values builds a strong culture, and a strong culture is extremely hard to change. It is said that “culture eats strategy” every day of the week.
What are your businesses capabilities that are simply better than any of your competitors? Often, Core Strengths are fundamental practices that your business has honed over time because customers love it. Customer service is fundamental, but companies like Nordstrom and Ritz Carlton are legendary for it. Listen to your customers. Why do they buy from you versus others? Make sure you continue to invest in and develop your businesses Core Strengths. They differentiate your business from others and are key to profitability.
What does your customer fear when deciding to buy from your business? How can you put their mind a ease and tip the scale when it comes to choosing? Sometimes it does not cost much, but the company must be able to stand behind the promise or guarantee. Alaska Airlines promises to have your bag ready for pickup in 20 minutes, or you will receive a credit on your next flight. Starbucks promises to make your coffee right or will make it again until they get it right. What promises can your business make to ease your customers mind?
BHAG© (Big Hairy Audacious Goal)
Describe what your business looks like in the future. A compelling vision of the future starts your business off to a “destination,” versus a direction. It places dreams in the minds of your employees and sets their conscience and subconscious thoughts in motion; creating ideas and solutions to get the envisioned future. When employees align with a future vision, they’ve bought a ticket to their own future and will help the company get there.
Need some help building creating Company Values”?
Schedule time with me today for a no-nonsense and no-obligation Values creation session. I can help you discover the Core Values that will attract the right talent and reinforce successful traits in your organization's culture.