A builder is someone who drives business growth by delivering real value to customers, brushing aside fads, short-term distractions, and financial gymnastics. Others are remodelers, improving efficiency, quality & costs…but if nothing new is built, they lead a race to the bottom. Others are decorators, trying to boost “curb appeal,” as they focus on quarterly financials. They’re engaged in a spectator sport, not a participant sport. Finally, some are realtors, reaping their rewards during M&A… when the work of others’ hands changes hands.
Does this mean you should forget about operational efficiency, financial reporting, or M&A? Of course not. But what is your passion? For the builder, it’s delivering customer value and driving organic growth over the years.
More in this 2-minute video, Be a business builder
Research published in Harvard Business Review showed companies exhibiting long-term behavior have higher revenue, earnings, job creation, and market capitalization. Clearly, the key to shareholder wealth is long-term behavior, not short-term. If you’re at a financial review discussing revenue, price and margins, you are engaged in a spectator sport. What if your meetings three years ago focused on developing blockbuster products? That was a participant sport, because your longer time horizon allowed you to impact future financial performance. Not just talk about it.
More in video, Leader’s Guide to B2B Organic Growth series, Video Lesson #7
Don’t let your future be “that time you’ll wish you’d done what you’re not doing now.” You’ll be thankful later if you recalibrate your time horizon now… diverting some of your short-term attention to the future of your business. Besides, what you do this quarter is largely a spectator sport. The prices, profits and margins we wring our hands about during financial reviews were determined years ago by the new products created then for customers.
More in e-book, Leader’s Guide to B2B Organic Growth (Lesson 7).
A fine innovation metric is the vitality index… % of total sales from new products (usually launched in the last 3 or 5 years). But it doesn’t tell you why your % is going up or down, does it? Sure, you can see which new products contributed… but you need to uncover the underlying reasons driving results. Otherwise you’re just watching from the bleachers.
More in article, 3 Problems with Innovation Metrics (Originally published in B2B Organic Growth Newsletter).