Coming up with a strong business or marketing strategy is fundamental in any enterprise. It has to be present regardless of the company’s size.
A strong plan takes into account both the present and future of the organisation’s objectives.
How well does your company’s strategy hold up? Ask yourself these three questions and fill out what may be missing to strengthen your strategy, and know why it is essential to have answers to them.
1. Do you have a definite view of your stakeholders or collaborators, their roles, and your mutual needs with them?
In a game, the most critical aspect is to know first the rules of the game and the players. Business isn’t so far from that in principle. Stakeholders (or for a lighter term, collaborators), are people or organisations that you need to work to accomplish your business objectives, such as making a profit.
Most businesses have four primary stakeholders: customers, employees, suppliers (or partners) and owners, which may grow into more complex trees of shared roles as the company’s size also increases.
These four can be defined through their roles:
Roles can intertwine between groups depending on business scale and their functions. Some companies have shareholders (part-owners) that come from their employee pool and others from partners.
Everybody is also a customer if defined under the question of “whom the company serves”.
A creative trick into quickly categorising which one goes is by looking up first what they do and what they provide for the business.
From there, you’ll get a more unobstructed view of what they contribute to your output and how to collaborate better with them.
Once they are defined, it would be a lot easier to find out what you and the business need from them, and what they need in return.
Employees are required to be productive, and in turn, they need appropriate compensation. Suppliers are required to deliver their share of materials or services, and in return, be given sufficient payment with scheduled regularity, and so on.
Here’s why is this important:
An organisation stands as a firm structure as long as it is organised efficiently. A fragmented and disorganised business will not perform as well, or even last for long. It is paramount to any business to identify and specify who does what.
Dissecting the organisation can let you identify positions or tasks that may contribute better or create savings for the company if given up, and help in building operational and objective strategies.
Once you can pinpoint what collaborators want from you and what you need from them, you can understand things from both of your perspectives (inside-out or operational) and theirs (outside in, or objective).
As an effective leader, you should also be attentive to what your collaborators say, as they can tell you what will satisfy them and continue helping make the business prosper.
2. Have you targeted your customers enough?
If you can’t clearly outline the types of people or organisations that buy into your product or service, chances are you haven’t targeted them enough to market to.
Knowing how to target your customers and stakeholders efficiently enables you to reduce potential friction during transactions and especially during strategy building.
Having your core teams, partners, and relevant subject matter experts or consultants agree to one communication approach will significantly improve business overall.
Here’s why this is important:
Being specific with delegated responsibilities, data being passed to, and improving interactions between teams, especially the leadership and sales teams leads to everyone buying in on your set goals and solutions.
With a mapped who’s who you can save time, money, and effort you pour on each group of people.
Implementing strategies will no longer result in misinterpretations, sudden changes in direction, and stakeholders not complying with the agreed objectives or methods.
3. Is your strategy designed for the long-term?
Think of the outcome of the current strategy you have in place and identify if the results you are anticipating would cover your long-term goals.
If your answer to that question is a yes, then you know for a fact that your strategy design is for the long-term. However, if your answer to that question is not a definite yes, rethink the design of your strategy and focus on your long-term end goal.
Your approach could be to either analyse the present meticulously, anticipate changes in your industry or market and carefully plan your future success.
Another method is to develop your strategies organically if you feel that the future is too strenuous to predict.
Here’s why this is important:
Keep in mind that a strong strategy has a definite outcome – which should reflect the following:
Achieving Strategic Strength can be done through a variety of methods that revolve around answering the above three questions.
It is important to know the details of every stakeholder, their roles, and their relation to the projected objective for them to buy-in and participate.
Large organisations with multiple departments and hundreds of associates may find it more challenging to execute. Still, fortunately agencies such as Exante Digital can help facilitate the needed thought leadership with pre-set frameworks and workshops tailor-fit for the client company.
Once you have directed all relevant stakeholders with strategic strength, success can only be inevitable.
Your strategy, provided it is strong and aggressive to achieve the desired results, will be executed by participants smoothly and firmly to create a maximum positive impact.