What You Decide NOT to Do Can Impact Your Strategy the Most

In developing and executing a business strategy, there are two essential decisions that get made:

  • What to do, and
  • What not to do.

Both impact what makes your strategy your strategy. It’s curious, really, because the real strategy is often in the things you decide not to do.

For example, perhaps your company is capable of offering 20 different services and you reason that the more you offer, the more you could sell. Sounds simple and logical, right?

But what if you applied the reverse logic to this strategy by deciding that fewer offerings would allow you to focus on what you do best and place heavier marketing dollars and resources of staff time behind those things? Would that increase your overall impact and drive higher revenues?

Let’s look at one other reality: information overload. You need to balance your information against your target market’s needs.

Today, information overload is profound. A simple Google search of communications produces 855,000,000 page results! On page one you will find results from Wikipedia.com and Worldwidelearn.com and the IEEE Communications Society, along with seven other major websites specifically addressing communications. It’s fairly easy to see how difficult it is for a communications company to get noticed.

Obviously, you need to do something besides just talk about your company’s communications capabilities. To help you decide what strategy might work best for your company, here are a few guidelines to help you in your planning:

• Be focused.

Whatever areas in which your company can provide world-class customer services support should be the measure of what you offer. Your capacity to service your customers after the sales is the single-most important thing you can do, short of offering world-class products and services.

Another reason to be focused is that how people acquire information is changing. Microsoft recently reported that 70 percent of PC search tasks are completed within one week vs. one hour using mobile search. Given those stats, it’s clear that knowing what to place on the screen and what not to place has never been more important.

Tom Marin is the president of MarketCues, a national consulting firm. Tom serves as a senior advisor and change-management consultant with 35 years of experience. He has worked for some of the world’s largest corporations, as well as middle-market firms. Tom's focus is to plan and drive strategy shifts and strategic growth programs in the printing industry and a diverse range of market areas.
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