How to Gain More Profits From Your Talent
Here are three questions you can answer that will help you make more profit with your talents
High-talent companies often exhibit patterns that prevent them from as successful as they could be. Take, for example, high-tech companies: They are highly talented and really know their technology. What is often lacking is the reward; the level of profitable sales that you, your team and your investors so deserve.
Here are three questions I encourage you to ask yourself and answer honestly. Based on my experience as authority in either turning around talented companies or bringing such companies to the next level I know these questions – and their honest answers – will bring you to the REWARDS you so deserve!
Give yourself a rating of 1 to 10 (10 is top-notch) for each of these questions:
Question 1: How clear are you on the competitive advantage and unique selling proposition of your technology or talent?
The top-notch rating means that you have taken the time to research the potential markets in detail and have established the strengths and weaknesses of your technology or talent. Also consider what else is under development – you can’t know about it all but you owe it to yourself to find out as much as you reasonable can. Consider both opportunities and threats. This SWOT analysis (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats) is so important because you don’t want to waste time and money to develop something that has little or no chance in the market. An executive coach who is savvy in both technology and business development can help you take the pain out of this critical step in securing your success.
Question 2: How do you rate your strategic focus?
You might be fortunate in that your technology or talent can be applied in many different markets, addressing different needs and customer pain points. Because your resources are limited you need to choose which one, two or perhaps three you will pursue first. All of a sudden the fortune feels more like a curse – it may so hard to decide which path to pursue. Just as you thought you made a decision someone calls you – excitedly, of course – and says “Could you do this?” And often, whatever that person asked about is not in the area of your focus.
A strong focus, based on your understanding of the competitive advantages, is the key to being successful – rather than feeling like a ping-pong ball bouncing between different application areas.
Question 3: If you have investors: How strongly do you believe that your technology or talent will give investors a great Return-On-Investment (ROI)?
A level 10 rating means you have no doubts. Often, companies need further investment to develop their technology or talent area further. Generally, the more risk the potential investors perceive the more equity they will demand. One avenue to increasing your own confidence and lowering risk is to create some commercial revenues with what you have in hand now.
For example, you might be working on a widget which you envision will meet high-performance specifications X. But right now, the manufacturing process is not quite stable yet. While you are addressing that issue you might be able to “bin” your widgets: The high-performance ones are great for high-performance applications. The lower-performing ones might still be useful for another application – rather than being scraped. It will also raise your confidence that investors will benefit. When you exude confidence you will be more successful in attracting the capital you need. Also, ask yourself how much capital you truly need – and this question goes right back to strategic focus and competitive advantages.
Even (or especially) successful CEO’s often do not get fresh perspectives from a competent, yet unbiased source. You are so close to your own business. Besides, even the best leaders have blind spots. Think of an 18-wheeler truck. You can place 4 sizable cars into the driver’s blind spots – no matter how good of a driver you are. A Fresh Eyes Assessment™ of all aspects that matter to your business easily overcomes this issue. In your business you need a person who understands technology/high-talent AND business to do this. This is where a highly qualified CEO coach comes in.
If you want more profits from your and your team’s talents give me a call. Let me know what you want to achieve. I look forward to connecting with you!
Stephie Althouse, Ph.D.