Tag Archives: Selective

How Do You Expand Your Market-Base? Six Suggestions

Situation: The CEO of a service company needs to expand its market base due to concerns that a significant service and referrals partner may decide to stop working with them. A break-up would have significant impact on salaries, effort and focus. The company’s priority is to expand client growth to minimize the impact of a break-up. How do you expand your market base?

Advice from the CEOs:

  • To expand or build a market requires a champion. Someone like the company’s founder who has the passion and contacts to build new business.
  • Second, incentives must be established to reward success bringing in new clients. These incentives must have teeth – no success, no incentive. No safety valves.
  • Third, create a plan to support the new business development – including marketing, event attendance, etc.
  • Initially, be selective and target just a few highly desirable new clients to test and refine the client attraction model before expanding to the broader potential client audience.
    • Build a set of case studies of services and results for new clients.
    • Track and prove out the profitability and workability of this model.
  • How should the effort to expand the market base be constructed?
    • Start with preparation. Research the current prospect list to assure that they are good prospects. Also look at the current company culture – do the company’s strengths align with what is needed to attract and serve new clients?
    • If the research shows that a significant number of prospects are different from current clients, think of this as a new channel. Create a different business unit to specialize in serving these clients. Hire a team to focus exclusively on the new client group, with proper incentives tied to achievement with these prospects.
  • Another company had a similar choice. They created a program to increase their market base and went after it with full focus. It took five years to accomplish vs. the two years that they had planned. Nevertheless, the results have been worth the effort and expense. If the company believes in the model, invest in it.

What Efficiency Metrics are Most Important? Six Suggestions

Situation: An early stage manufacturing company has established repeatable operations that produce the desired quality. The CEO now wants to focus on efficiency. Early research suggests a number of areas on which they could focus. Based on your experience, what efficiency metrics are most important in manufacturing?

Advice from the CEOs:

  • Much depends upon what is being manufactured, and both the complexity and labor intensity of the manufacturing process. Start with the basics: looks for a relevant quality metric, and a time / delivery metric. Test these for relevance to your operations and adjust or change them as necessary over time.
  • Start with simple metrics and make them more complex over time.
  • On an ongoing basis, monitor your processes for continuous improvement. If an employee comes up with an improvement that increases efficiency and saves money, recognize and reward that employee.
  • Be selective. Limit your focus to 2-3 metrics per quarter. Make first period performance the baseline for the next period.
  • Areas in which to focus:
    • Cycle times.
    • Statistical process control to monitor:
      • Yield
      • Throughput
      • Fall-out
    • On time delivery to production schedule.
    • Quality check at end of production – yield rates versus pre-set targets.
    • Use Google to see what others are using. Google “Manufacturing Performance Indicators”.
  • As you develop your efficiency metrics, include your most effective metrics in performance measurement for bonus awards.