Ready for 2012? – part 2

 In Building Successful Partner Channels, Business Model Management

Ready for 2012? – part 2

This is the 2nd in a series of blog posts under the main headline “Ready for 2012?”

The objective of the blog posts is to outline a 2012 “preparation process” where you end up having a plan and a budget which is a stepping stone to a position as the global market leader and where the stakeholders are 100% aligned and committed to execute the plan and deliver the numbers.

Alignment & Identification

As stressed in Ready for 2012 #1 achieving alignment and identification for your 2012 plan is crucial for gaining maximum (revenue, gross margin, market share, profit, number of customers, number of resellers, valuation, cash at hand or whatever metric you are using) impact for each EUR spend on the cost side.

Alignment is the assurance that all stakeholders have a common interpretation of the plan. Yes, this is the plan

Identification is the buy-in from each of the stakeholders to the plan.  Yes, this is my plan!

Who should be involved?

Alignment and identification requires involvement in the planning process from the very start.  You can forget all about the traditional approach of doing the 2012 plan in the executive lounges and present it to the staff at a 1-day 2012 kick-off with an external key-note speaker in February 2012.  Big companies with high momentum may get away with this approach (for some time), but not the small and mid sized ISV’s (Independent Software Vendors) with two digit growth rate ambitions.

Who are the key stakeholders in the execution of the plan?

Get them involved from the very start.

Are you relying of resellers for revenue generation and market share growth?  How will you ensure their alignment and identification?

Get them involved from the very start.

But that will make the group of people involved with the 2012 planning process rather large?!. Yes, it will.  But you are not going to beat the market without all your key stakeholders pushing and pulling in the same direction.  Identify the key stakeholders and get them in the same “room” before you start the planning process.  Only through the involvement of all key stakeholders can you achieve the alignment and identification required for preparing and executing the 2012 plan successfully.

Corporate Health

Alignment and identification is a key component of “corporate health”.  When your ambition is to make it to global leadership, corporate health is fundamental.  You may perform well for a couple of years focusing on financial performance only, but you are not going to get the momentum required to make it to the top and stay there.

“Health is the ability of an organization to align, execute and renew itself faster than the competition so that it can achieve and sustain exceptional performance over time” [1]

Before you get started on the 2012 preparation process do a health check on your 2012 planning team. Check the current degree of alignment and identification. Are you already on the same page or you miles apart?

Next blog post:  How to do an alignment and identification check.

[1] Quotation inspired by the book “Beyond Performance: How Great Organizations Build Ultimate Competitive Advantage” by Scott Keller and Colin Price.

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