When we started Crux, we tended to focus on the industries we knew but our processes deliver results for businesses across all B2B sectors so, we meet a lot of people working in a diverse range of industries.
Recently we’ve been working with IT companies, we didn’t design it that way but from our recent experience, IT companies are pushing forward with the commercial side of Digital Transformation more than others.
We recently met with an IT company that have done something interesting. They realised that the volume of change in the commercial world is vast and have taken steps to make sure they are at the cutting edge.
The board decided that they needed to know what was the very latest in thinking and practise across all elements of the modern commercial world and, what would work for them. They also realised that they might not be best placed to offer the best advice on this and that there were people in the company better positioned than them to understand this.
How they generate conversations, how they create demand, how they secure work, how they deliver work and how they convert conversations to cash flow.
They selected a team of people from the organisation and gave them remit to define this existing process and go out to the world and see what is going on. They looked outside their industry at what is coming and why would changing benefit them and how could they bring these new ideas into their company.
This group were selected from a list of people who had volunteered to join a company changing project. They were then arranged to ensure cognitive diversity...
...if you want different ideas and results, you need different thinking and perspectives.
They were then given “responsibility relief” from their current functions, their KPIs were reduced to allow them the time to include this new project without becoming overworked.
The team comprises of people from Operations, HR, HSE, Quality, Product development, Infrastructure, Marketing, Operations, Finance and Sales
They had a budget and were asked to map out every aspect of what they do in finite detail. In depth analysis and assessment of efficiency and effectiveness and how everything links together...or not.
The first element of the project focussed on Sales, Marketing, BD and CRM. In each area they have sub areas, and they began to chart out how it all works and feeds into each area of the business.
They created a picture of their current process then began to question everything, considering current best practise and available knowledge.
They have found areas of weakness, where the reasons for doing what they did weren’t clear and didn’t have a direct link to results. They have found areas of their business that are broken.
They started this project thinking that it would throw up some areas where they needed a new system or a new process. What is has done has made them rethink the whole idea of sales marketing and BD in a modern digital world.
A complete stop, reset and rewire of their commercial practises.
The CEO told us…. “we’ve been locked in a way of working that we have carried with us from company to company for 30 years. Using pretty much the same models and expecting different and better results…. we have just been doing the same things over and over and have only now realised that everything has changed…everything except us…”.
Project Latitude is allowing this company to look up and around, keeping their ‘heads on a swivel’ to see and evaluate the very best in what is happening and coming in their commercial world. They then take all of this and perform an in-depth review of costs, returns, upheaval and how everything will work in harmony.
As a result, they have redesigned their marketing efforts, they have brought in Social Selling & influence, they brought in a new CRM but approached it differently. They have reshaped their team as now they do things differently; they need people who can operate differently.
The CFO told us…"we’ve all tended to work in pockets…. Marketing does what they do, Sales do what they do, Operations the same and all support functions too. Latitude has allowed us to break the barriers and look at everything from a new perspective. Why do we do this that way? In many cases the answer is ‘because that’s what you do’…we are finding out now that this thinking isn’t good enough".
They are changing the internal structure, changing how they operate and their language. They are redesigning and restructuring what they do to ensure they are best placed to take advantage of the changing motions of modern B2B commerce.
Often, we meet organisations who open by saying “we know we need to be doing a bit more on Social Media…”. ‘Doing a bit more on Social Media’ is an answer to the wrong question.
Here are some relevant questions to be asking your team:
Doing what you did before but doing more of it…won’t help
Tinkering around the fringes of digital…wont help
Hoping that the Marketing team will get it right…won’t help
The fact is its time to rethink every element of what you are doing commercially, and its needs a cross functional team input and drive with the support and knowledge from the board…redesigning and restructuring for growth in a new version of the world you once knew.
We are inside the biggest and most profound evolution in business since the Industrial Revolution – we are in the middle of the Digital Revolution.
Have you looked at this in the way that Project Latitude is doing…or are you hoping it all works out…?