Most have us have worked in companies with complex organizational structures, and layers of processes and procedures that slow decision-making. I work with a lot of business owners who tell me that eliminating corporate bureaucracy was a key factor in forming their own business.
They wanted a streamlined organization and structure. Less processes and paperwork. More autonomy for themselves and their workers. They have great stories of working together in the early days of the business to overcome obstacles and secure new contracts.
As the company matures, business growth become more challenging. There are more opportunities, more clients, and more competition. New employees are needed but hiring and onboarding is slow. Turnover is high. Longtime clients are dissatisfied. Employees are miserable. And the business owner wonders how it got this way.
Business Development Process is a Must Have
The goal of a business development process is to increase the probability of winning by positioning a company’s products and services and building strong customer relationships. It sounds simple and it can be with a disciplined approach to business development.
Success leaves clues. Companies that turn best business development practices into a repeatable process have a greater return on investment than those that depend on unplanned or organic activities. When I assess a company’s business development process, I look for gaps and omissions that slow their growth. Here are some common mistakes companies of all sizes make in their BD process.
Bid Too Many Opportunities
“If we don’t bid it, we can’t win it.” This is a true statement, however companies that bid every job waste money, weaken company morale, and send a negative message to the client. This approach is most common in companies that don’t have an effective go/no go decision criteria.
Have No Customer Relationship
“We have the best proposal.” The best proposal is determined by the customer. The proposal is typically the final step in confirming the buying decision. Regular customer contact during the BD and project delivery phases demonstrate interest in the customer’s success and helps position your company for future opportunities. While a compliant and responsive proposal is a must, effective marketing, positioning, and selling will help seal the deal.
Misunderstand Price and Value
“We are in this to make money.” Another true statement! The opportunities you choose to bid must be ones that you can execute profitably. To develop a winning price requires the ability to distinguish between price, value, and added value. Price is what you charge for the service. Value is what your customer believes the service is worth. Perceived value is the difference between the customer’s perceived value of the solution and the price they pay, plus any implementation costs. A winning bid is often one that has the largest difference between the customer’s perceived value and the bidder’s price.
Bring Your Business In Line With Your Vision
A simplified BD process addresses that desire to reduce bureaucracy, simplify decision-making, and grow your business. Imagine a process tailored to your fit your business and target markets. One that is flexible enough to adapt to market shifts and internal organizational changes. What would it be like to know that your opportunity qualification process improves your overall win rate and frees up resources to deliver projects that could lead to long-term contracts and renewals?
At Marcomm Experts, we believe you should have more business with higher profits. After more than 30 years of helping businesses like yours, we understand the constant pressure you feel to ensure your business grows. This is why I will work alongside you and help develop and execute a strategy that will generate you a profitable, sustainable business.
So, schedule a call. What have you got to win?