Connecting to Market, Behind the Mask

A fundamental aspect in developing the Business Model for an enterprise is Connecting to Market. This component involves structuring effective means to penetrate the market and interact with customers, facilitating sales and support strategies, as to promote valuable and sustainable relationships. A fantastic Value Proposition will not contribute to the business success as expected, if it is not perceived as such by the target audience. This may require segmenting and establishing appropriate channels to enable optimized sales and post-sales interfaces, which are friendly to customers and efficient for the company. When the offering and the audience are much diversified, the standardized treatment can hinder the perception of value by some being poorly served, and the financial equation for exceeding it with others. It is important to know customers’ profiles and their related expectations, so to enable serving them suitably, either directly or via third parties. In this way, the business can build appropriate bridges to maximize the expected value flow.

 

Throughout the Coronavirus pandemic we are facing, this aspect has been deeply impacted, precipitating changes to make this connection possible without physical contact. The widespread use of Internet and social media, of online platforms to hold meetings, virtual classes and transactions, the implementation of delivery mode for products and experiences, all demanded a lot of unexpected effort. On the other hand, resistant behaviors were overcome and unavoidable changes were accelerated, reducing operating costs and expanding the business reach through virtualization. We already knew that digital marketing and technology in business were important, but now they no longer seem optional. For some, this transition can be very complicated or even impossible, but it should be noted that this business challenge continues to be Connecting to the Market, and needs to be tackled so we can remain in the game and win.

Monitoring for Achievement

Every sensible business owner or institutional leader wants his/ her organization to generate the most possible value to all stakeholders involved. After all, that is the core reason for any enterprise to exist: meet needs or fulfill desires of whom relies on it as provider, and reward who invest and work on it. Looking from a simple business perspective, the organization should be effective in satisfying its customers and efficient to operate in a sustainable way. Resources and activities are placed to produce expected results, to balance this dynamic equation is the basic challenge of management, which to be performed requires monitoring.

Monitoring presupposes key indicators, that set expected outcomes as concrete benefits, and metrics to follow up on what contributes to make them possible. The correlation between these two perspectives and its understanding by those involved is key to ensure focus and performance in the organization. Usually the tendency is to pay more attention to means than to ends, like measuring quantities and registering activities, rather than taking the expected results as guide. However, until it becomes clear what are the ultimate goals of our investment and work, we may get confused and face lack of accountability that will hinder the organization from attaining success. By the way, considering the definition of success from the dictionary leads to this very conclusion: “favorable or desired outcome; the accomplishment of an aim or purpose”. Linking metrics, that are meaningful and actionable, is fundamental!

One cannot lead or manage without setting goals and monitoring progress, since both implies learning. Resistance to monitoring is just natural to human nature, so be intentional about it if you really want to succeed, in all aspects.

Processes as Business Asset

I usually think of the productive chain when I go to a super market for organic products, with processes like: identify and certify suppliers, contract and balance supply, receive and store products, position in store and promote, sell and update stock, monitor and discard products due, evaluate demand and adjust. All of this besides the support processes with people, infrastructure and business management. The logical organisation of activities and resources utilized defines the value flows and provides the systemic vision to coordinate them, in order to generate sustainable value for customers and shareholders. WholeFoods was recently acquired by Amazon in a multi-billion transaction, for the brand’s high penetration in the market and for the processes that operationalize this valuable business

Strategy as a way to go

Strategy is a term that still evokes a certain reverence, prepared by privileged minds and able to do wonders. In companies it is normally formulated or revised annually by the senior management, off-site and with support from an expensive consultant. Later it is communicated to the others, with a climate of great expectation by the impact it will bring to the business and possibly in the organization, reversing poor performance and building growth. Unfortunately, up to 80% of companies fail to implement their strategic plan! More important than trying to elaborate over the unpredictable future, would be to equip the organization with a collective intelligence and means to systematically learn how to generate more value in the business. Strategy does not need to be an existential rethinking, but more of a reflection on the way as you go

#strategy

Do you have a Management Model?

A brilliant business idea, implemented with a great combination of resources and organization, should deliver good results. However, results tend to worsen, or may even become unfeasible as time passes by. Inevitable changes on external context and on internal conditions bring misalignment among market, strategy, and operation, as well as resources and activities need coordination to respond effectively to clients and business requirements. This dynamic to stay focused and improve continuously the company’s ability to generate more value, based on principles and purpose established, configures its Management Model. When the Management Model is not defined or appropriate, a culture of performance does not grow in the company, investments are not properly prioritized, stakeholders do not learn how to maximize results, and leaders do not develop.

#enterprisemodeling

Is your Operating Model defined?

All business idea, no matter how good it is, can only make a difference when put into practice, and so demonstrating its ability to generate value. There are many ways of combining resources and organizing their productive relation, considering human and technological competencies, internally only or integrated with third parties. This arrangement is called Operating Model, as the result of an exercise of structuring options to run the business efficiently and sustainably. With the Operating Model defined, leaders can promote an active collaboration among business participants, based on a shared vision of the working processes involved, for an optimized execution.

#operatingmodel

Have you thought of your Business Model?

When you want to start a business, or to understand an existing one, it is key to think about Business Model. It describes the logic of how the company creates, delivers and captures value from the market, under a strategic vision. After all, every business is an exchange of value between parties, which can happen in various ways. The Business Model makes it easier to communicate business concepts, develop strategies, and align stakeholders, so to structure and test the idea for generating desired results. It begins with the perception of a need or an aspiration, either expressed or implied, that one believes can be met in a profitable and sustainable way.

If you have not thought yet of the Business Model for your company or institution, you are missing an opportunity to make great difference.

#businessmodel