“How does a business incorporate?” is one of the most common questions asked in business development workshops and seminars. A business development workshop or seminar should address this question as one of its main topics. However, when addressing this question, one must also ask “What does not describe the process of how a business incorporates?” Below I have listed the top four issues that are frequently addressed in these discussions.
Strategy is defined in many ways by those who use the term. To simplify it, there is a “process of how a small business develops and uses a strategy.” Most often, this “strategy” is developed by the firms’ management teams and it is communicated to the other firms involved in the discussions about the firm’s goals and objectives. The communications regarding a firm’s strategy are conveyed through oral and written communication, presentations, newsletters and press releases. The strategies that are communicated by management become the intellectual property (or strategies) of the company; they are developed, improved and/or maintained according to the nature of the competition and the state of the firm’s economy.
Referrals are also addressed in the “process of how a business incorporates?” This area is related to strategy but it is often viewed as an independent entity that has to do with firm growth, organizational development and/or duplication. The reality is that referrals are part of the system that supports firm growth, organization growth and duplication – they are the drivers of more sales, more customers, more referrals and ultimately, greater profits for all firms involved in this process. The “who, what, where, when, why and how” of this system drives the “how” of this “process.”
Referrals can be either “inside” or “outside” the firm. An inside referral is a recommendation (often from a current client) that is used to enhance or improve the services and/or products offered by a particular firm. An “outside” referral is a recommendation that is made by another person who is not a current client of the services or products offered by a firm. These recommendations can be from a government official, a banker, a non-employee friend, etc. Which describes the process of how a business incorporates?
The third category, business development, is related to how companies develop internal resources to support their market, customer and internal growth goals. A company development strategy is a series of activities designed to strengthen ties between external organizations and internal firms to drive growth, strengthen the firms’ internal networks, and create new potential markets. Which is why “the business development strategy” is one of the three commonly asked questions about how a business incorporates?
Finally, there’s an informal third category that is sometimes called an “old-fashioned” organization progress strategy. This third category involves activities that aren’t quite as modern as some of the other categories – but aren’t completely obsolete either. Examples include traditional seminars, conferences, workshops, and educational visits. How can “old-fashioned” be described as “how the company develops and utilizes new technologies?”
Skillful consultants bring their experience to bear when they help organizations develop new business processes, increase productivity through efficient service, reduce costs and gain a competitive edge. To what extent, then, does a firm “utilize” these skills? It’s important to remember that many seasoned consultants bring their A-game when they work with smaller, boutique firms – where old-fashioned may very well be out of the question. Yet when a skill like “focusing on internal inefficiencies” helps firms “identify” problems, “improve productivity,” and “reduce costs,” then a firm isn’t really “using” any old technique.
When it comes to a more contemporary approach to technology and business, skillful consultants are absolutely essential. In fact, you probably know them best if you’ve worked with one of today’s established solutions firms. There’s no substitute for an experienced consultant who can tell you exactly how to use new technology to drive your business forward. And there’s no substitute for bringing a fresh perspective to an organization’s current situation. Asking the right questions and listening to the right people can go a long way toward answering this question. Ask them how they handle “old-fashioned” or “standard” forms of consultation today and you’ll get a clear answer to the question, “What is the process of how a business incorporates?”