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Business review & performance turnaround

Business Performance Improvements

Engaged to conduct a business review & implement strategic change for an under-performing Signage & Wayfinding business…

Engaged to conduct a business review & implement strategic change for an under-performing Signage & Wayfinding business…

The business landscape has become increasingly dynamic. Today, companies face all the traditional business challenges, at the same numerous new ones. The economic and political climate. The impact of the digital age, reducing physical space of commercial environments. Changes to the buying process, both B2B and B2C. The cultural shift of new generations entering the workplace, and millennial’s replacing senior management.

As business leaders we all need to review, and perhaps adapt, our organisational structures. Our methods, processes, attitudes and culture, implementing any required changes to meet today’s business challenges.

To summarise, those of us who don’t risk the health of our businesses.

Business reviews

Business reviews, often also called business health checks, are necessary to keep companies in peak condition. They diagnose symptoms of any current, or future, business performance issues. As a result, business reviews analyse all areas of a organisational structure, systems, processes and culture. Consequently business reviews identify the cause of any ailments that lead to poor organisational health.

If you don’t know where the issues lie, you can’t fix them. Once identified, corrective change initiatives can be devised and implemented, to return or maintain, peak businesses performance. This results in the company having the ability, and tools, to successfully navigate the challenges, and take advantage of business opportunities.

The importance of regular business reviews should not be overlooked. Even when business is good, you should review yours. However, if you’re seeing poor performance issues don’t ignore the symptoms. All of a sudden your business may need major surgery. On the other hand, if addressed quickly a simple tonic would have improved your business’s performance.

Intro.

This case studies covers an engagement to assist an under-performing business conduct a full business review.  Contacted by the Managing Director, who had seen the company’s turnover decline over the past couple of years, and in short wanted a business review and strategy to stop the downward spiral.

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

engaging an external business consultant, to conduct the organisational health check, would deliver more honesty and ultimately quicker results

The Managing Director and Shareholders needed to identify the exact cause of the business’s issues. In particular they wanted to devise and implement a business performance improvement strategy, to turn it around.

They knew a professional business consultant, with no preconceived ideas or emotional attachment, would be the best way to conduct the business review. By engaging an external business consultant to conduct the organisational health check, they would deliver more honesty, providing better insight, and ultimately deliver quicker results.

The client

The client, a signage and wayfinding company, recognised for their quality and craft, design, manufacture and implement environmental branding solutions. Servicing high profile clients, including major architects, designers and brand owners, the business have an impressive portfolio of completed prestigious projects.

As a signage and wayfinding company they provide internal and external built environment branding solutions. Primarily for retail and infrastructure visual identity and wayfinding projects.

As is often the case with SMEs, the business operated with a flat management structure. All business activities had to go through the Managing Director,

The MD then reported directly to the Shareholders as their sole point of contact with the business.

Signage & wayfinding

Business review & performance improvement | the brief

We were engaged to source an interim business consultant, with experience of environmental branding and manufacturing environments. The brief for the business review and performance improvement was broken down into the following responsibilities.

  • Complete a top to bottom business review.
  • Identify under performing areas, and weaknesses, within the business.
  • Devise strategic change initiatives to improve business performance.
  • Present the business review findings and business improvement strategy to the Shareholders and Managing Director.
  • Return the business to profit.

Our Business Management Consultant

From our network, we specifically selected one of our professional business consultants. They had a track record of turning around under-performing businesses. In addition they had experience of working with design and manufacturing businesses, operating in signage, wayfinding, graphics, outdoor advertising, point of sale and interior fit-out.

Find out about our Interim Recruitment solutions

Commercially astute, our business consultant quickly cuts through the clutter to identify problem areas in under performing businesses. They have the proven pedigree, and experience, of making a quick impact that results in business performance improvements.

A meeting our client and business consultant was arranged. Following the meeting our interim business consultant drew up the key discussion points, his strategic proposal and terms of engagement. This was then presented to the Managing Director and Investors.

As a result our interim management consultant was engaged to conduct a full business health check.

“(Name removed for confidentiality) started this week and I am sure things will now progress quickly. Many thanks indeed for all your help”

The business review

During the initial weeks our business consultant worked within the company, conducting a business review. This included:

  • Reviewing the entire organisation, its systems and processes, conducting a business health check on every stage of the clients service cycle.
  • Engaging with staff across all areas of the business, getting insights into their departmental challenges.
  • Conducting suitability and capability assessments of all staff members.
  • Identifying talent development needs of staff, including management and senior leadership mentoring requirements.

 

On completion of the business review areas identified for improvement included:

  • Sales management processes, from marketing through to customer support.
  • Order handling and processing functions.
  • Production processes, equipment and environment.
  • Installation and on site services.
  • Company wide management processes.
  • Internal communications.
  • Procurement processes.
  • HR and legal controls.

In summary having completed their business review, firstly, our management consultant presented the findings to the Managing Director and Shareholders. Secondly they shared their strategic proposal to improve business performance.

Consequently our interim consultant was engaged further, to action their strategic plan and implement their business performance improvements.

Business performance improvements

Our business consultants strategy resulted in successful business performance improvements.

The company now benefited from clear sales management processes, strategy and controls, formal board meetings and new organisational systems. As a result the business was quickly returned to profit.

Because of the rapid business improvement, the investors faith was restored. With renewed confidence came further investment, enabling the business to capitalise, and continue to build, on their resurgence.

Conclusion

The additional investment was made on condition our interim management consultant became company Chairman. Firstly to continue working with the Managing Director, and new senior management team, providing leadership coaching and support. Also to oversee the continuation of implementing the new systems and processes. Ultimately championing the strategic change throughout the business.

Secondly, our consultants strategy included reverting from the flat management structure, where previously everything went through the MD, to form a board of directors. As Chairman he could ensure all directors were committed to driving the new strategy and complying to the new systems and processes. Furthermore the newly formed board would be held accountable. In essence the Chairman would not allow old, bad habits to creep back into the business.

The second part of this case study, a more in-depth overview of the business performance turnaround, is coming soon. In the meantime, if you’d like to discuss your business needs, and find out how our services, and network, can help you and your business, get in touch.

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