A privately held consumer products company was struggling with continually shifting priorities and stalled growth. The good news was that they had strong brand identify and significant domestic market share within their core product area. The challenge was that over the last three years they were having a difficult time getting traction with a number of different growth opportunities. They had made significant investments to grow in China but it was proving to be a bigger challenge than anticipated. Their brand was strong enough that they frequently got requests for ancillary products related to their core offerings. They were finding that these opportunities were becoming more of a distraction than a benefit.
The leadership team initially framed their challenge as an organization design issue. As they began to dive deeper into finding a solution, they began to realize that many of the organization challenges they were facing were a result of an unclear strategy. We held a series of offsites with their leadership team and examined customer and competitor data as well as industry trends. They landed on a strategy that was a significant shift from their current approach but it addressed emerging customer needs and leveraged customer relationships and key internal capabilities.
The primary immediate impact was how they invested for growth. They realized they had been spending a significant amount of money on the after-sales service part of their business and in their new strategy that was much less relevant. So much so, in fact, that they were now debating the possibility of outsourcing it altogether. They also quit chasing a number of new product opportunities that were lower volume and being marketed to customers that were not in their target customer group. The clarity they got from the new strategic focus allowed them to focus time and money on more promising avenues of growth.