With the New Year at hand, many people are busy prioritizing their resolutions – those personal pledges made with the best of intentions. Lose weight, quit smoking, exercise, volunteer, pay off debt, get organized.
But what about New Year’s goals for your business?
As 2014 launches us all on a fast track of new challenges and opportunities, one business reality is blazingly clear:
Companies who wish to have a competitive edge
must build on past successes and look for fresh ways
to evolve, add value and stay relevant.
Nowhere is that more true than in how you serve current and potential customers. Set your business goals from their perspective, no matter what the business climate.
When we shift the focus from what we find interesting to what people actually value, we position ourselves to build productive relationships. A good place to start is with a basic four-step process:
- Pick up to three activities, services or products that were a hit last year and strategize on how to improve on that success.
- Pick up to three activities, services or products that were underachievers last year and phase them out or find a way to reinvent them to fill a genuine need.
- Assess your growth potential in the most popular product or service niches, and execute at least one innovation that will take your business into related new territory.
- Upgrade processes and technology to improve the customer experience at every touchpoint – call centers, web sites, point of purchase, mobile, social.
Keeping a finger on the pulse of those with whom your company does business, and tailoring every effort to their hopes, needs and wants may not guarantee a record-breaking year. But it will provide a strong basis for strategic planning that cultivates true loyalty.
In 2014, or any other year, only good can come of that.