Seasons Greetings to you all from all of us at Strategy1.
With the Holidays upon us, it is often hard to think about business. It is more fun to think about gifts, both giving and receiving. I have a suggestion of a gift that you can give yourself that will keep on giving all next year. In fact, maybe it could become your Number One New Year’s Resolution…
You should step back and reflect on your business or organization with the question: What could I do differently in 2014 to improve the Strategic Alignment of People, Plans, and Processes in my company? What do I want the results to be?
One way to accomplish that is to get outside! No, I do not mean literally, but take the perspective of your customer. Examine every aspect of our business as if you are the one being served. Is everything pointed in the direction of giving that customer or client an outstanding experience from your organization?
What about that first contact? Remember, there is not a second chance to make a first impression!
Thinking about People, are all your customer-facing employees motivated and trained to deliver exceptional service? Actually, I would like to expand on that point: ALL your employees ARE customer facing! Even if they do not have direct contact, they are part of your team to deliver that outstanding customer experience. Remember that Southwest Airlines commercial featuring their baggage handlers? Yes, even the shipping clerk is customer facing…
What are the Plans that you have to make your company better? Are they focused on improving the customer experience? After all, that is why your organization exists, right? Plans can be a grand new strategy, or as simple as a concise training manual for new employees. In any case, they must be documented, communicated, and their implementation measured.
Finally, what Processes do you need to change to enhance the customer experience? Are there things that you can do differently to make it easier for your employees to serve the customers? Are there ways to streamline product development to bring better products to market faster?
As you reflect on these issues, I would like to add one final thought. Deloitte Consulting did a statistical study of 25,000 companies over the past 30 years, and they came up with Three Rules for Making a Company Truly Great:
· Better before cheaper – compete on differentiators other than price.
· Revenue before cost – prioritize increasing sales over reducing expenses.
· There are no other rules – change anything you must to follow Rules 1 and 2!
With that, those of us at Strategy1 wish you the happiest of holidays, and please reach out to Strategy1 in the New Year to help you keep your Number One New Year’s Resolution.