This post is the second in a series of posts discussing our six-step process, The GamePlan™. We use this process to help small to medium privately-owned businesses achieve a higher level of success. The first post in the series covered The Discovery Analysis™. This can be likened to a diagnostic check-up used to determine what aspects of the business, if any, are in need of improvement.
The Strategy Process™ begins immediately after The Discovery Analysis™ and consists of five important parts:
- Confidentially discuss the key findings from The Discovery Analysis™.
- Review The Strategy GamePlan™.
- Discuss a preliminary timeline for The Strategy GamePlan™.
- Agree on the proposed costs for The Strategy GamePlan™.
- Initiate a preliminary discussion about Finders, Minders & Grinders™.
1. Discuss key findings. The first step in this process is to confidentially meet with you and discuss key findings from The Discovery Analysis™. At this point, we will have spent somewhere between eight to ten hours working with you and your staff, analyzing your financial information, analyzing industry information, and more. We should be able to confidently and competently discuss items that we believe may enhance your ability to achieve your goals and objectives.
As found in The Discovery Analysis™ on this website, we will also be prepared to discuss your financial information as compared to your industry.
This graph compares one company’s net profit margin for the past two years to the average of those companies in its industry. They say a picture is often worth a thousand words, and this image is no different. It will illustrate the areas in your company which require immediate attention, and is an integral part of our CFO services approach.
This is an illustration of the text information that will be a part of the industry analysis. This “IndustryScorecard” is from a different company than the one illustrated above. It gives us valuable insight into the cash flow and profitability of the business. Additionally, this information is provided in a similar format to what bankers and lenders use, giving us an advantage when we meet with them in the future. Armed with this state-of-the-art knowledge, both your company and ours will have a good idea of the areas to be focused on during The Strategy GamePlan™.
2. The Strategy GamePlan™. This is a written document that is confidential to you. It consists of the following sections:
- Your current situation and specifics on suggested improvements
- A suggested timeline for implementation
- Suggested costs, if any
We guarantee you’ll receive value from the information contained in The Strategy GamePlan™, regardless of whether or not you decide to hire someone from our firm. The document will belong to you and be yours to keep or refer to for future usage. Our objective is to have The Strategy GamePlan™ become your company’s game plan for the future, which we believe will help you achieve success and the realization of your goals and objectives.
3. Preliminary timeline. The suggested timeline for the achievement of the goals and objectives will fit around your schedule. We’ll work with you to create a reasonable time frame that fits within the constraints you present to us during our discussions. We are flexible and can shorten or lengthen the timeline, based on your input and advice.
4. Proposed costs. Together, we’ll come up with a suggested fee arrangement that works within your company’s budget. We’ll need your input and advice during this process. We want to become a long-term, trusted business advisor to your company, so we can help you with your financial strategy, cash flow needs and dozens of other services, all on a cost-effective basis.
5. Finders, Minders & Grinders. We will briefly introduce a concept that is written about in our two books, The Danger Zone, Lost In The Growth Transition and Avoiding The Danger Zone, Business Illusions. The concept is illustrated by the following graphic. The text below the graphic explains the three categories which exist in your company.
Finder – The entrepreneur, the visionary, the leader, the idea generator and the catalyst for future change. Finders work in the future.
Minder – The administrative, accounting and operational staff of the company. Minders are historians and paper pushers. Minders work in the past.
Grinder – The people who do the physical work of the company. Grinders may be construction workers out in the field or telemarketers at a desk. Grinders work for today and are not concerned about the future or the past.
The most important function in this organization is that of the Finder. The company cannot continue without a visionary or a catalyst for future change. The other roles are also needed for a company to survive. The Minders and Grinders, however, can be replaced by others and are not individually indispensable. (Avoiding The Danger Zone, Business Illusions, pg. 29).
It has been our experience that one of the greatest dangers to a Finder is to become so busy within the business that too much time is spent in Minding and Grinding. This process looks like the following:
The key benefits of helping the Finder spend more time in Finding activities are the following:
- Reduced stress
- More free time
- Increased personal wealth
- Increased company value
- A solid retirement plan
- Security for loved ones
- Peace of mind
- Reduced cash flow worries
The transition process of helping the Finder move from Minding and Grinding Activities is illustrated here.
The next step in our process is The Strategy Implementation™.