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When was the last time you worked on your business?

We come into work every day focusing on the day-to-day operations, “business as usual”, managing teams, maintaining systems, and putting products and services into the hands of our customers, but that’s working in, not on, so when we think about working on, we’re talking about stepping back and looking at your business, the market it operates in, the customers you serve and the value you create.

Knowing where you are, knowing where you operate, the external forces, the needs of customers, and your ability to compete to win those customers bring definition and clarity to where your business is on the journey, we need to know where we are starting to navigate where we are going.

Understanding the business operating dynamics, you can insightfully develop your goals, and form the basis for decisions, where are you targeting? how will you get there? and how will you create unique value for your clients? Unique value that gives the market choice, a choice that brings customers to you.

Strategy is all about choice, acting on information or not acting on information is a choice, if we do not do something, we are choosing not to do something. Developing a strategy is about choosing to translate business goals, qualified opportunities, and aspirations into actions over time. Simple right?

The real trick here is knowing what not to focus on, the power of no, choosing not to pursue a customer or market segment is as equally powerful as knowing which to focus on. You need to choose what you’re going to do better than your competitors, and fundamentally how you’re going to “solve the problem” for your identified customers in a way that sustains a strategic competitive advantage.

You have a choice to make, continue business as usual, where you leave the future success of your business in the hands of the market, giving the opportunity for competitors with better operational effectiveness to close the gap, or strategic action! where you wilfully choose to move towards the goal, identifying the resources and capabilities with intent that sustain a competitive advantage and long-term relevance in the market.

Where to from here?

Develop a business strategy that details the playbook required to realise the future state of your business, a strategy that outlines the activities, actions, resources and capabilities you’ll need, when you need it, linked to all of the critical areas of your business, that enable you to realise the vision.

The key is that in the process of uniquely assembling these strategic levers of change, you can develop and sustain a competitive advantage, evolving to become the business you choose to be, and that leads customers to choose you.

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