In talking to many people over the past few months and speaking at many conferences, there is one recurring issue that keeps rearing its head. Whether it’s marketing people or sales folk or board directors, the issue troubling most changemakers is how to get buy-in from the rest of the board or senior management for a total value proposition overhaul. These people know that their businesses can’t continue as they are and that a shift needs to happen. They need to move their businesses away from continually pushing more product, services and messages to their customers and shift towards getting their own house in order, making themselves more attractive and clearer to their desired customers. They know that this is not just a messaging exercise but a root-and-branch evaluation of where and how they provide value, yet changing the status quo can be a challenge to established team members. They often say things like, “I know we need to change but maybe our pain isn’t great enough yet, maybe we’ll have to lose some major deals or fail badly for a few quarters before action is deemed necessary”.

The issue with this approach is that the remedy is always a knee-jerk reaction and involves a tactical response such as more sales training or a new, bigger, bolder, hard-hitting marketing campaign that pushes more things at customers. Some unkind folk would say this is merely putting lipstick on a pig.

One of the best ways of starting to get buy-in is sharing some of the current market trends that are sweeping across almost every industry sector and looking at those very successful companies that are changing to a customer-pull dynamic. Another way to get buy-in is to feedback some customer value experience research to your senior teams on what your customers truly value about your orgainsation. Your board can’t argue that they know better than your customers do. You’ll be amazed how this will focus their minds!

If you missed our previous slidedecks:
Part 1 can be viewed here
Part 2 can be viewed here.
Part 4 will be available shortly.