Growth Strategy | Business Development | Financial Focus | Structure & Process | Executive Leadership

Advisory Services

Corporate Growth ChartCorporate Growth Strategy

Our clients may ask us to serve as a sounding board to double check and possibly clarify their strategic thinking. Often, we work with them to articulate their long range objectives in terms of areas of specialization, revenue, profitability and exit strategies which may include continued operation as a private company, a merger or an IPO. We then jointly work backwards from the desired end point to determine the actions that need to be taken now to get ready for then. Our advisory role is one of responding to the questions and areas our clients consider critical and may include the following:

Desired long term results:

  • Current Business Status
  • Markets clients and backlog
  • Financial analysis
  • Competitive position and strengths
  • Organic growth vs. acquisitions
  • Areas to enhance growth and profitability
  • Market and Client Priorities
  • Business line/service/product offerings
  • Resources and skills
  • Executive targets and compensation
  • Cost structure
  • Operational enhancements
  • Business and organizational structure
  • Potential exit strategies (if appropriate)
  • Process and milestone reviews

We present our results through in-depth discussions and ongoing reviews with management, not PowerPoint decks. Powerful insights, candor and findings that lead to actions are our calling card.

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Business DevelopmentBusiness Development

Profitable growth can be achieved only by identifying high potential market areas and executing a strategy to penetrate those areas.

A high potential area for your company may or may not be the same as that for another company. Indeed, we often steer clients away from the 'market of the month" if they don't have competitive strengths in that area. While others flock to what is hot, we help our clients focus on the areas in which their current skills and client base create a real competitive advantage. We work with our clients to formulate growth strategies based on expanding service offerings and client mix to create a portfolio of short term, mid-term and long term pipeline opportunities so that the company can prosper in the short time and accumulate the resources for mid-term and long term growth.

We also help our clients think through the organization and staffing of the business development function. Business development can work effectively as a centralized, decentralized or hybrid organization depending on the corporate organization and strengths but the capture process must be well defined and competitively powerful.

Equally, the hiring, compensation and retention of business development staff must be designed to attract real producers and avoid the "itinerant marketer" who moves from company to company every year or two without producing real results.

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Financial GrowthFocusing Financial Resources

In most instances our clients already have in place basic financial control and reporting systems. The next step for them is to deal with the difficult issues of maintaining current profitability while investing in the future through business development, proposal preparation and staff growth and development. Doing so requires getting beyond the clichés that founders and CEO's are offered. Yes "you have to spend money to make money" but you can also spend money and produce only negative returns. "You can't save your way to prosperity" may be true, except, of course, when you use the savings from an unproductive area to invest in growth.

We are often asked to start by reviewing our client's assessment of the profit levels and indirect expenditures that are essential to current viability and competitiveness. These throw off the investment dollars that can be used to fuel growth. Reducing unnecessary expenses and increasing staff utilization increase the availability of financial resources for growth investments. The final stage is to work through the allocation of these resources over time among alternative investments in business development, proposal preparation, staff expansion and infrastructure development.

Being successful, our clients have already considered many of these issues. Our role is to use our external viewpoint and experience to sharpen the focus on these issues and offer even more powerful solutions.

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Structure and ProcessCorporate Structure and Processes

Our clients are often faced with assessing the effectiveness of their current organizational structure and business processes. We supplement their insights with our own in addressing such issues as the organization structure that is needed for today's business but is scalable for planned growth. This includes questions of centralized versus decentralized operating areas and support functions. It also includes the nature and timing of internal infrastructure investments in business development, HR, finance, legal and regulatory compliance. Finally, we provide realistic advice regarding the development of the business processes that are necessary without "breaking the bank" and diverting excessive amounts of management attention.

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Women ExecutiveExecutive and Human Resources

Our clients are acutely aware of the need to continually strengthen the capabilities of their executive leadership to achieve and support desired levels of future growth. We work with them to identify the strengths of their executive team and the additional capabilities that may be needed over time. We also support them with realistic advice regarding the nature and timing of staffing for both technical and managerial roles.

The recruiting and retention of executive personnel require compensation plans that motivate high performance for the long term and are relatively immune to "gaming". Based on our own experience and that of others we, advise our clients with regard to the appropriate mix of such incentives as salary, cash bonuses and equity participation. In discussing these issues with our clients, we are acutely sensitive to the trade-offs between short term and long term performance and the appropriate compensation for each. We also join with our clients in thinking through the levels of performance, and associated metrics that justify incentive rewards.

Our role, of course, is limited to the business aspects of compensation plans, not the legal or accounting aspects. At the request of our clients, however, we are prepared to join them in discussions with their legal and tax advisors.

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