Not all successes are obvious or clear. During difficult trading conditions, in particular, it is tempting to dwell on the problems, rather than the opportunities. But even in the trickiest situations, my experience is that there will still be successes out there – if you’re willing to look for them.

One of my clients, for example, is struggling to deliver growth from its core product ranges. So, we segmented the ranges more carefully and found that although many of the cheaper sub-ranges were suffering declines, there were clear growth stories from some specific added-value products.

What’s more, customers were telling my client that no-one else had anything like these products available in the market. Unsurprisingly, my client is now working out how it can develop and drive greater growth from these ranges, and not simply determining how it can halt the drop in revenues from its entry-level products.

Twenty years ago, IBM shifted its business model – and its fortunes – from being a seller of hardware to becoming a much broader-based consulting and solutions provider. This shift followed the realisation of the new CEO, Lou Gerstner, that the customer service teams, which were a cost centre rather than a profit centre at that time, were seen by customers as a key point of differentiation. In other words, service and expertise were a hidden success and potential driver of growth for IBM.

Where are your hidden successes? And what steps could you take to find them, nurture them and exploit them to drive even greater growth for your business?


Off The Record: Suddenly I See by KT Tunstall

Suddenly I see

This is what I want to be

Suddenly I see

Why the hell it means so much to me


© Stuart Cross 2018. All rights reserved.