Cyclical nature of corporate developmentPosted: August 17, 2007
I wrote an article previously about the cyclical nature of corporate development some time ago and wanted to elaborate. Business is mostly a string of iterative processes. Fine tuning a value proposition, training / replacing people to get that perfect team in place and skimming fat of processes. The whole idea of iteration is to learn and improve.
Not many think of market entry in the same context. The number of iterations is basically defined by the depth of your pockets. Ideally companies would use resources skilled in market entry that have a number of iterations under their belt and not all entrants need to pay the same educational fees. In many cases, however, this is not the case and a few iterations are needed before companies get it right.
What separates winning companies from companies that were not meant to be is that simple fact that winners learn from their iterations and their over all tangent is positive. The rule of thumb is that one out of ten succeed, which means to me that only ten percent actually learn ad the rest go through iteration after iteration until their cash reserves are spent.
As the owner of a company or investor, how do I choose an experienced champion and how do I make sure that my organization has a culture of learning? The answer is simple your market entry champion has to be a person that has been through the experience in the past. This excludes local retired executives of potential target clients, your HQ price fighter who has never lived in the US and it most certainly excludes a channel only approach. The second question is more difficult? Top management from the HQ need to spent considerable time in the field to feel that they are a part of the field crew and not envoys from the ivory tower. Face-to-face meetings between field and HQ crew need to be held regularly. Field staff need to be seen as the spearhead and HQ is the staff that supports and momentum for a crushing impact.