When I think of business success, I believe a great business is one that’s sustainable, predictable, stable, consistent and has an emotional connection.
Let me explain these concepts of a successful business further…
A sustainable business is one that lasts a long time, in fact, it should outlast us. If you want a truly successful business, you ought to be working on the business with the mindset that this business should outlast you.
With predictability, we can relax and know that our future is secure, i.e. we have no doubts about where our revenues and profits will come from.
Stability simply means we have the right people and processes in place.
Consistency means that every client we interact with is treated the same way. This means that when people recommend your business or return to your business, they know exactly what to expect.
One of the most important aspects is emotional connection. This is the glue that binds it all together. You must connect with your customers emotionally by providing exactly what your customers want to feel emotionally when interacting with you.
This emotional thread must also run through the company from senior management all the way to front line people. When your employees know what they (the company) stand for, they convey this to the customers in their interactions and behaviors towards them. Once you establish this, you have an emotional bond that creates loyal customers forever.
Combining all five elements above is the formula for a successful business.
Now lets’ look at how to achieve this.
The Five Disciplines to Exponential Growth
Growing a successful business is much bigger than just revenues and profits. Most businesses are focused on growing revenues and profits, however, when we look at the definition of the success, you also have to grow in morale, in engagement, in how we acquire new clients, acquire new employees. We have to “add zeros” in every aspect of our business not just revenues and profits.
This means any area of your business you can measure; you add a zero to it – make it exponential. Instead of getting 20 new clients, how can we get 2000? Instead of getting 30% engagement – how do we increase to 90%? You have to think bigger and abundantly. Adding zeros is about thinking abundantly and growing the business in all areas, not just revenue and profit.
Discipline #1 – Strategy
The first discipline is strategy. Strategy involves understanding how we are going to get there, what are we choosing to be the best in the world at, making sure we are going after the right marketplace and have the right strategy in place.
One of the key components of the strategy discipline is choosing what our core competencies are as an organisation. Let’s think of it this way. There’s us and then there are 10 competitors. Maybe there are 10 skills that each business has to fulfil. We think we have to be great in all of them but that’s not true. We need to choose 2-3 out of those that we can be the absolute best in the world. When we become the best in the world at it, it makes us valuable to the customer.
In order to choose what we want to be best at, we have to understand what is the opportunity in the market we are filling? Opportunity in the market is not about product. It’s more about your company’s core competencies that will help us fill that opportunity in the market.
If we only focus on the product, we make mistakes. Blackberry is a prime example of that. They focused on the product and so they no longer exist in the size and volume that they used to. They weren’t clear about the opportunity and choosing what they wanted to be best in the world at. And the world changed.
Discipline #2 – Business Development
The second discipline is business development. Business development consists of marketing, sales and customer service. We have to be proactive in all three and that helps us to be predictable as an organization, i.e. people know what to expect when dealing with us.
A big part of business development that’s overlooked is who is our target audience or core customer? We don’t want to do business with everyone – choosing exactly who we want to deal with helps us attract the right customer.
When choosing the customer, often we choose by demographics, but far more important than that is psychographics – the customer’s needs, wants and fears.
These have nothing to do with our product. When you figure out who the core customer is that we want to attract – whose problem we are solving, that sets your business development in motion.
Discipline #3 – People
The third discipline is people. It is about how we develop leadership, self-leadership, and how we develop our team.
The world has done a disservice to the words, ‘management’ and ‘leadership’. The world has made it sound like they are the same. Leadership is all about people. We have to create passionate and focused people for leadership. Management is about creating competent and productive people. We lead people and manage processes.
Discipline #4 – Execution
The next discipline is execution. We need both management and leadership in a business for good execution. This is where you create consistency in your business.
Leadership motivates and inspires your people to do what needs to be done and management assures that they do it efficiently and to the best of their ability.
Discipline #5 – Mission
The fifth discipline is all about mission. It’s not a mission statement – it’s more like a clear purpose statement. In other words, what is the purpose of the organization? Why are we here? Why do we do what we do? What are the values we are living by and how are we influencing the world?
This is also where the emotional connection piece comes in. And this is also why there is such a high turnover of employees in companies today – people jump from job to job because there is no emotional connection to the business.
There are two major components of mission.
The first is to identify a clear purpose. As an organisation – what do we do what we do? It has to be more than making money. It has to be about the impact that we are making in the world.
The second piece of the mission discipline is all about our values. Who are we? So many organisations haven’t taken the time to define their value system as an organisation. We have to define and choose the culture of our organisation. If we don’t choose it, we will still have a culture, but we are not guiding it.
Get Started Now!
As the saying goes, you can make more money, but you can’t make more time. The time to get started is right now!
You can start by looking at the five disciplines and seeing which of the 5 disciplines are holding us back right now? Look at your gaps, and then go deeper. Most people get stuck in the surface level of things. When we go deeper, we can figure out which discipline we need to focus on and how can we use it to lead us into success.
So with this in mind, conduct an audit on the Five Disciplines; put them into priority order (from most work required to least work required) and then get started – now!
Article by Monte Wyatt – https://www.montewyatt.com/