Tops for Setting Your Company up for Future Success with a Health Check

By Kristin Kelley Janacek, Digital Strategy Officer at VNCTech Group 

The world continues to evolve and seems to be changing at a quicker pace every time we try to measure it. In the midst of the continuous change, business leaders are faced with decisions for how they run their businesses and achieve success. Often, business leaders will determine the goal and success metrics and infrequently revisit the strategy while they are focused on the tactics of the day to day operations. All the while, they are making decisions intended to reach their success metrics, but if the world is continuously changing, are they making the right decisions for their ultimate success goals?

 

Within every company and industry there are many moving parts to keep an eye on and incorporate into decisions. Analyzing every option for each decision would paralyze a company. However, evaluating the factors that contribute to your decisions periodically is a healthy investment of time. Even better is to create a method for refreshing the metrics for success for your company, how the world has shifted since the last time you evaluated the industry and determining your updated destination.

 

Am I suggesting repeating creating a business plan annually or more often? No. I am suggesting having a method for periodically checking in with the health of your company from a few angles:

  • Assess the market conditions for the markets in which you operate.

  • Then tweaking your business model to ensure you are able to capture the most business you can.

  • Finally, taking a critical look internally at your assets – everything from the products and services you offer, the supply chain and delivery mechanisms and your internal tools and processes.

The list below will provide guidance for what to review when you are revisiting your company goals and ecosystem. How you do this and the resources you used depends on the complexity of your industry, the availability of information and the time you are willing to invest in this process. If you create a rhythm, this can be a great exercise to help the leaders and employees engage in a collaborative way. However, this can also become complex so proceed with caution. With that said, some of this can be automated if your business or industry has the information available in a digestible format.

 

Understand Market Dynamics

The first area I suggest companies keep a pulse on is the market in which they operate. The tactics of running a business hinder the ability to take a step back and see the shifting dynamics. In most cases, the shifts in the market are gradual. What do you look for in the market?

  • Where is the market heading? What are the trends?

  • How are customers evolving? Are there systems or tools changing the way they operate?

  • What is your competition working on? How often are they releasing new products or services? What target market are they focusing on? How does that threaten your target market? Do you know why you lose deals/clients to your competition? Why are you winning?

  • What markets are adjacent to yours that could be growth opportunities?

  • Are you a critical player in your customer’s businesses (or in a B2C world, are you critical to their daily lives)?

  • What are the alternatives your customers could choose? For an over simplified example, if you sell washing machines, you are selling the ability to get clothes clean. Dry cleaners and washboards provide a similar function for daily life.

Health check on your business model

How often are you assessing your business model and how it’s meeting the needs of your customers and industry? Are you able to provide your service or product in a way that promotes additional business?

  • Is your value proposition still relevant to your target customers?

  • Are your channels for delivering your products or services optimized? Can you revisit partnership and supplier agreements? How often do you revisit contracts?

  • How are you receiving revenue – retainer/agreement based or job/product by job/product? Is this the ideal way your customers would like to pay for your product/service? Are there new revenue models emerging which can be adopted?

  • Have you revisited your cost structure to optimize margins and delivery of products/services?

  • Are your pricing models appropriate for the current market and customer trends?

 

Infrastructure and offerings to enable continued growth

Your products and services and the infrastructure for delivering your product is likely an area that you are most aware of since this is closer to the tactics of your company’s operations. When was the last time you assessed how well everything is working together? How you run your company and the tools you use determine your base cost and operational efficiency. This is most in your control so reviewing it periodically with a critical eye will benefit your ability to be nimble to changes in areas where you have less control such as market dynamics.

  • How do you deliver your product or service?

  • What is your infrastructure for the operations of your business? Product development, testing, customer relationship engagements, sales and marketing? Are you leveraging the tools and assets from day 1 of your business or have you modernized and found opportunities for efficiencies or cost savings?

  • Are your employees, vendors and partners able to collaborate efficiency? How is the business enabling this?

  • Have you aligned your internal costs to your expected revenue?

  • Are your products and systems scalable with your growth?

  • Do you have manufacturing? Are you continuously improving to remove costs, defects, and time?

  • How secure is your intellectual property? Do you have policy and procedures in place?

  • How do you service your customers? Do they have their own portal for interacting with your customer service representatives?

  • How are you ensuring data security?

  • Find out the benefits of migrating to the cloud: https://www.vnctechgroup.com/costsavings

 

The final piece is to bring all of this knowledge together in a comprehensive plan for optimizing your business. In an ideal world, your business would have all the tools, resources, and time to fully optimize your business. However, in the real world, there are tradeoffs of what a company can do and decisions need to be prioritized based on what will have the biggest benefit to the business and what time and resources are available to the company. Proceeding with an informed vision will be imperative. Decisions you make could create positive changes to your business or could drastically impact your ability to meet the evolving market and customer needs. This is why it is imperative that business leaders across the company have strong business acumen as well as specialty in their specific domain.

 

Have you considered taking a deeper look into these aspects? Chances are you think you already are because you have leadership meetings quarterly and annually. Are those meetings looking at your sales and operations metrics or do they also include strategic sessions to review the aspects listed above?

 

A business health assessment can help you align your decisions for the future market not living in the past. Involving a third party to assist in the initial assessment can provide an unbiased perspective on the prioritization that will help your business. Furthermore, the third party has experience with a multitude of companies and industries and will be able to provide valuable lessons-learned that can be leveraged by your company – of course, preserving the proprietary and strategic information from prior clients.

 

At VNCTech Group, we have a group of experienced professionals who have run successful businesses and learned lessons from their own business experience and also have a vast amount of experience consulting businesses to operate to their best ability.

Schedule time today to speak to our team and learn how we can help your company.

Digital Strategy Officer

Business & Process

VNCTech Group

info@vnctechgroup.com

817-752-3700

VNC Technologies Company

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