Strategy Diagnostics

Identify what is working and what is not

strategy diagnostics

The undeniable truth about strategy

Before changing your strategy, you must conduct a review of the skillsets of your management team.

Imagine for example, that you decide to stop selling B2C and start selling B2B. If you don’t have existing B2B skillsets in your company, your chances of success are rather low.

And the same reality applies to all of your value-creation activities. If the core competencies of your business (product offering, pricing, positioning, partnerships, sales channels, communications, etc.) are not compatible with your new strategic direction, you’ve got a serious problem.

Now comes the hard part.

As your category matures, you MUST update your strategies, activities and skillsets. Customers in the early market [think innovators and early adopters] want technical or performance-based suppliers. Whereas customers in the mainstream want service-oriented suppliers that provide intangible attributes and reduce the risk of adoption.

So, in terms of strategy and execution, your business must evolve and learn how to replace technology differentiation with intangible differentiation.

So many strategies, so little time

When considering a change in strategy, business leaders often turn to trendy, one-dimensional solutions — lean startupproduct-market fitblue oceanjobs to be donestorytelling, etc. — rather than aligning their value-creation strategies with the characteristics of a target market, which automatically makes ALL of their activities more valuable.

That’s why our strategy diagnostics service addresses the unavoidable needs of founders, CEOs and executives. We identify and evaluate all of your value-creation strategies that must be in alignment for commercial success.

Strategy Diagnostics Defined

The primary objective of boards and their leadership teams is to increase the value of the enterprise.

To do this you must highlight the value of your products or services for your target market, gain a competitive advantage and establish an enduring company.

Strategy diagnostics is the process of analyzing your competitive edge and updating your value-creation activities. It is not a specific event, such as a product launchRather, effective strategies must follow the adoption lifecycle – from innovators and early adopters to laggards.

Our Strategy Diagnostics Framework

The goal of a strategy assessment is to answer the fundamental questions: do we need to change our strategy? And if so how, and by how much?

Specifically, here are the detailed questions that must be answered:

  1. What fundamental changes in the marketplace are currently having an impact?

This question about change that is currently underway is primarily designed to reveal your company’s vulnerabilities. Does your organization understand what it takes to compete?

Perhaps there is a new competitive offering, or buying practices have changed. How well have you responded?

So, when you ask: “what factors are diving change right now?” you are measuring your weaknesses plus analyzing the things that have changed since you last reviewed your fundamental strategic approach.

  1. How has our category changed?

The second question is designed to assess your current market category. And by answering it, you will know if your market category is growing in importance, static, or declining (relative to other categories competing for a buyer’s budget).

You must clearly understand how important or powerful your category is and whether that power rising, falling or static. An often-overlooked fact is you can’t be more powerful than your category.

  1. How are we doing relative to the category?

And naturally, you will want to answer the question “how important or powerful are we in our category? Typically, your market share will reflect this.

And are you winning, losing, or keeping pace relative to your most-dangerous competitors?

Working with corporate boards and executive management teams, we fix things in a hurry.

The more distressed your situation, the bolder the actions necessary to turn things around. Such actions often require rapid decision making that involves significant risk and has difficult near-term consequences. Companies often reach a point of diminishing return due to:

  • lack of product and technology renewal
  • incomplete product offerings
  • lack of focus on target market segments
  • poor execution that does not scale well

Our proven process for evaluating your strategic priorities is designed to help founders secure a spot among the 5% that succeed. It is also a guaranteed method for achieving market leadership or sustaining revenue growth with an existing product.

From Strategy to Execution

A strategy committee is often the best way to ensure organizational alignment, manage expectations, and monitor success factors. In general, each of the following activities should have a formal program to ensure strategic success.

  • Offering development
  • Partner management
  • Positioning and messaging
  • Market relations
  • Sales support
  • Sales channel management

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