Commentary on management issues, from looking after your start-up to pitching to keeping your people on track.
A business case tells a story. It starts with how your world isn't as great as it could be. The hero (you) goes on a quest to make changes to working practices, products, tools and people. Along the way are some challenges, but at the end everything is so much better than it was before.
The story we need to tell isn't a single plot. Not only do you need to show how much better things will be, you also need to show how [keep reading...]
A challenge I sometimes face is justifying action when quality is falling. It's easy to say, "Our quality has fallen," and more difficult to add, "and it's costing us $X in lost revenue and $Y in lost profit." The latter is quite helpful if you're creating a business case to fix it.
Finding out what "X" and "Y" are can be hard work. I look for these headlines to get [keep reading...]
How do you get into the mind of your customers when the budget's tight, or you're still waiting for customers to come knocking?
Market research reports can be costly, and if you only have a few customers, a survey might not be practical. Here are four ways I keep on top of what's happening in [keep reading...]
Business plans often predict how much a target market might grow over time and the resulting changes to financial performance. One measure I've seen used more frequently in recent months is the CAGR - the Compound Annual Growth Rate. This percentage describes the mean average growth each year over a defined period. It's often used to compare investment strategies, growth plans, and performance relative to markets and competitors.
Market research and analyst briefings sometimes use the CAGR to show how a market might change over 5 or 10 years. This gives valuable insight into what changes in business performance might be expected if nothing is done differently. For example, if the market is growing at a CAGR of 5%, and the business has historically grown at 5%, changing nothing could see [keep reading...]
"We don't think you've understood your requirements."
Ballsy answer for someone not yet on a short list. It was an exploratory call at the back end of a Request for Proposal process. Research leading to list [keep reading...]
I've seen so many set themselves up as "Remote Working" experts, [keep reading...]
It could be the business is no longer viable. It might need more money than is available to clean out premises, order in new stock, cover missed payments.
If this is the case, [keep reading...]
I’ve seen this too many times on change programs. Far too much effort is put into trying to preserve “the old ways” in one form or another. Some of the common ones I’ve seen:
I wouldn’t suggest ignoring the old ways completely, you need to help nudge people forwards. But I wouldn’t be so eager to make exceptions “just because that’s how we used to do things”.