If you want to accelerate* the growth of your business, you will need to start by building the necessary foundation for a strong increase in revenue and earnings.
The foundation consists not only of a management team and organization that is focused on and geared for growth, but also of a strong brand.
*Acceleration means growth that is significantly higher than the average growth in your company's industry
If you are to achieve accelerating growth, you simply can not settle for a slight increase in sales to your company's existing customers. You must also succeed in breaking through to a larger amount of new customers, which requires a strengthened brand.
Keep in mind that a larger increase in a company's turnover actually occurs when more customers get to know, follow, prefer, buy, use and recommend the company's brand.
Building the unique and strong brand is the clear focal point of my work.
The brand that stands out from the crowd in a brave, responsible and valuable way. Respected, recognized and loved for challenging the status quo in an interesting way.
The brand that many talk about, the "darling" of the press and the navigation of competitors.
The brand that evokes emotions, and has a large fan base that acts as important ambassadors for the brand.
The brand that can accelerate the growth of your business.
I call my approach The 5 Breakthroughs because it is simply about breaking through to the five moments that constitute the premise and foundation for accelerating the company's growth.
Breaking through to the truth about how well prepared the company is to succeed in the markets of the future is crucial to ensure the motivation for starting up a brand transformation.
If you assess your starting point on the basis of the company's historical results instead of the future competitive situation, you risk underestimating the need for development and change in relation to accelerating the company's growth.
Breaking through to a new understanding of future business opportunities is crucial to be able to initiate a targeted brand transformation.
If you assess your potential for growth based on today's markets instead of future customer needs, technologies and trends, you risk overlooking the full potential to accelerate the company's growth.
Breaking through to a new brand platform that is just so unique and visionary that it matches the untapped growth potential is crucial for being able to complete the brand transformation.
If you believe that the company's current brand platform can foster a stronger brand and inspire the development of new attractive products, you tend to overlook the significant development and the major changes that are needed internally in the company to accelerate the company's growth.
Breaking through to a brand that is so acknowledged and attractive that it can serve as the market foundation for unleashing the full growth potential is the actual realization of the brand transformation.
If you believe that the company's current brand and market position can trigger a significantly larger turnover for existing and new customers, you are underestimating what it takes to accelerate the company's growth.
5. Establishment of the creative corporate culture
Breaking through to a corporate culture that is so creative that it can continuously drive the brand forward and expand the company's business activities.
If you cultivate a conservative corporate culture, where you deliberately opt out of any effort that can not improve the company's results in the short term, with certainty you opt out of the innovation that can unleash the company's full business potential.
In practice, the first three breakthroughs are established in a 6-12 month period, where the duration depends on the intensity of the work and the degree of involvement of the company's management. In this phase of the work, I act as the innovative and leading force.
The building of the strong brand as well as the establishment and activation of the creative corporate culture is in principle an endless effort, where the accelerating growth will occur 1-2 years after the start-up depending on the intensity of the work and the willingness to invest. In this phase of the work, I act as the management and organization's continuous sparring partner and innovative chief whip.
The process of carrying out a brand transformation that can trigger the accelerating growth thus typically takes 1.5 - 3 years.
The brand transformation is of course individual from company to company. In some companies, there is a need to rethink and re-establish all aspects of the business. In other companies, it may be that you primarily need to establish a single or two significant breakthroughs in order to accelerate the company's growth.
The 5 Breakthroughs are thus in no way an expression of wanting to carry out a lengthy, resource-intensive work effort at any cost. My approach to brand transformation should be considered solely as a framework that ensures that the strategic work in your company always focuses on doing exactly what it takes to accelerate the company's growth.
There is an obvious time lag between cause and effect when it comes to brand transformation.
You need to ensure the mental readiness in the management team, gain vital insights, create a new vision, establish a unique brand platform and build the strong brand before you can expect to be able to accelerate the business growth.
Brand transformation takes time, a lot of managerial resources and financial investment.
Short-term pressure on earnings and the fear of failure are always the enemy of more long-term strategic work.
Find the motivation to invest in the future by thinking about the alternative. Maintaining the current strategy, success formula and brand platform can feel safe and secure in the short run. But it is really only a sure path towards stagnation, decline, collapse,not to mention lost potential. It is only a matter of time before major changes in the market erode the relevance and competitiveness of your business. There is no point in standing still as a company when everything else is moving at high speed.
Brand transformation really is a simple investment calculation.
The hard facts are that we tend to underestimate, what it takes to succeed with brand transformation and organizational change. But we also underestimate the short-term effect on business performance of immediate improvements and increased motivation. And more than anything we underestimate the long-term business impact of building a stronger brand, innovation of new products as well as creating entire new business models.