Which Way Do You Want Go?

It seems that everyone or every company I speak to in the printing industry is facing the same concerns, questions and fears. Here are some of the questions I hear.

How do we increase our sales? How do we keep from cutting our prices? How do we stay in business? What does the online world mean to our pricing? How will it affect our future? What is social media “really” all about and what does it mean to us? Should we focus on what we do best or diversify? What is it that we do best? What type of staff do we need to meet the needs of today’s buyers? How do we differentiate ourselves? How do we communicate our message in this rapidly changing world? How do we bring about change or even know if we need to change?

These are all great questions. I have heard such questions and know it is tough to navigate through times of uncertainty and change. However, this post will try to help you think through this. Tough times call for creative, well-planned and confident strategies. Such questions, as the ones above, are ones that can be addressed through three components known as assessment, challenge and support.

First, your current situation must be assessed. A number of “how and what” questions are listed above and should be used in this assessment. So, reflect on where are you as an organization/individual. What is it that you do really well? What areas need to improve? So, an assessment is a snapshot (taking all things into consideration) of where you are right now. Today! So, take a time out, take a deep breath and assess everything—internally and externally—to determine where you have been, where you are now and where you seek to go. This is your benchmark.

Ryan T. Sauers is president of Sauers Consulting Strategies. The firm consults with the front end of privately held printing and related organizations across North America. The areas of focus are: sales growth, brand positioning, organizational strategy, and integrated marketing (with an emphasis on social media). Sauers speaks at many national events and writes feature articles in global publications. He is an adjunct university professor teaching leadership and entrepreneurship. Sauers is also the author of the best-selling book "Everyone is in Sales" and the newest book "Would You Buy from You?" Please visit: SauersConsulting.com.
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