Within the business industry, regardless of the many different business strategies that a company may choose to implement, there is one measurement of success that trumps all others: profit. As we know, money speaks; and it speaks loud. So whether you are an industry leading company such as Apple or if you are a company who has had their fair share of ups and downs such as Blackberry Limited, previously known as Research in Motion (RIM), your ultimate goal is to create as much profit as possible.
Of course there are several different methods to go about doing this, many of which go hand in hand with one another. An example of these various methods could include providing excellent customer service, leading to high levels of customer retention. Another could be by providing innovated and top quality products or simply by being able to sell products at the lowest price such as Wal-Mart. However it is important to note that simply doing whatever it is that makes your company successful year in and year out more often than not, will not always be enough to keep them at the top. Companies such as Blackberry Limited or General Motors have had their fair share of success but they have also experienced many failures. Contrary to what many think, a company is never “too big to fail”. Companies must constantly evaluate and be willing to transform their business strategy (if necessary) to ensure that the full profit potential is being reached.
In the textbook we are introduced to Dell, a company which learnt that success can be reached even after shaking the hands of failure first. The case study explains Dell’s rocky entry into the groundswell. “Dell had a direct sales model which took advantage of low costs, flexible products, and easy ordering to drive its growth and profitability.” (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p. 223) However as time went on, Dell failed to evaluate an restructure any potential threats to the company’s profits and customer satisfaction began to decline. Dell was not listening to the customers’ dissatisfaction with the company ad because of that nothing was being done to fix this problem. Yes, Dell is just one company from a long list of companies who experienced similar failure stories due to lack of a business transformation, however what makes Dell such a good case study isn’t their failure but rather their birth of their social strategy. Relating this back into the work industry it is important to realize that there are bound to be problems but that in order to fix those problems you must be willing to listen before you act and then act on what you see. It’s important to know that everything is constantly changing and if you are not changing with it you will get left behind. Be willing to accept change when it is needed and be willing to hear what your customers are saying to you because after all, without them you cannot succeed. I will leave you with five steps that Li and Bernoff provide on how your company can create the best chance of succeeding:
-First, start small.
-Second, educate your executives.
-Third, get the right people to run your strategy.
-Fourth, get your agency and technology partners in sync.
-Fifth, plan for the next step and for the long term. (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p. 230)
Li, C., & Bernoff, J. (2011). groundswell: winning in a world transformed by social technologies. Boston: Harvard Business Review Press .