In several other articles,
we’ve been discussing the necessity of understanding where the
organization is going so you can make the right choices about where to
spend your time and energy. I pointed out that you should be focusing on
optimizing those process that most directly tie to one of the corporate
In a presentation
I heard this week, Mr. Keith Eades pointed out how crucial it is that the sales
support staff be aligned with the outcomes desired from the field sales
personnel. I would argue, however, that it is not only the sales
organization that must be “harmonized”, but it is critical for all
levels of management to take a holistic look at any particular business
Departments are not unto themselves
functional area in an organization is a critical component of the whole,
is it equally critical to evaluate the effectiveness (and efficiency) of
the entire end-to-end process. This generally requires crossing
functional boundaries between departments. While the Sales organization
has the direct contact with the customer, the procurement,
manufacturing, finance and customer service departments are all part of
completing a sale. Therefore, it is imperative that each of these
functional areas be evaluated when reviewing this process.
companies realize the need for some level of self-assessment. The
question, however, becomes how to accomplish that self assessment. Where
does one start? What are the boundaries?
My suggestion is to
look at your business as an architect would look at a building. The
architect sees the various systems that must work together in order for
the occupant to receive value from the structure. The corporation (or
other entity) must look at itself in the same manner – all the
systems must work together to produce value for the customer.
One of the ways to
view this is to use a framework that describes your business. The beauty
of a framework is that all people in the organization can see what all
the other areas in the business are doing. Additionally, using a
framework can aid in decision making – by assessing which areas are working
better than others, and by identifying early on which areas would be
impacted by any specific decision.
There are a number
of good business frameworks to use as a starting point – just pick one
and get started. Try this out:
Select a business process
framework, and identify one of the processes to evaluate.
your execution of each of the steps in the process as to how well you
are currently performing the process.
those below par, determine which areas are a higher priority to further
goals into your current plans that allow for improving the identified
I would be
interested in hearing how this exercise works for you.
The Right Use of Enterprise
The Importance of