Successfully Executing a New Business Strategy Requires a System

A System for Ad Agency New Business

A plan is just a plan until it’s executed. Execution is the battleground that determines success or failure.

According to the RSW/US survey report,

66% of agency execs stated their new business hire was unsuccessful because the person lacked a methodology.

How many annual planning meetings has your agency gone through to create a strategic new business plan only to have it fail in its implementation? Maybe this year, instead of focusing so much attention on the plan, use annual planning to create a dynamic process for execution.

Experience has taught me that successfully executing a new business strategy requires a system. You need detailed methods, procedures and routines for consistency and success in new business.

Here are some practical tips for creating a system for new business for your agency:

  • Make ONE person responsible. You will need the right person in place to oversee the process. Someone who has focus, determination and consistency. These are the attributes required for new business success.
  • Convert your strategic plan into a game plan that includes Milestone Dates, To Do Lists, Resources, Assignments, etc.
  • Set goals that stretch your agency, but that are reasonably attainable and measurable.
  • Determine what is needed to achieve your priorities such as people, funding, equipment, space, training/development, etc.
  • Get organized. Use a program such as Basecamp, an excellent, inexpensive online project management tool to help in the implementation process.
  • Just start. A lot of time can be wasted if you don’t start somewhere. Identify and focus on the first step. Once you get started, it’s much easier to keep going. Also remember, don’t over think things, keep it simple.
  • Based on your tasks, create a must-work-week schedule. Arrange your work week priorities ahead of time. “If you don’t control your schedule, someone else will.”
  • Monitor and report progress. Unless there is an ongoing process for evaluating execution, making decisions about it and closing the loop with the original strategy, the effort fails.
  • Be prepared to make changes. This is not an exercise in perfection. Plans give you a road map to your goals, but you have to be ready to make adjustments. Every plan will have obstacles but don’t abandon your strategy at the first challenge. Instead, create “work-around” solutions, even if they are temporary. This will allow you to keep the process moving. Don’t let anything stop the implementation process.

Business development doesn’t have to be so difficult. With a little forethought and the creation of simple steps and procedures, you can create systems that will make it much easier.

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photo credit: John Christian Fjellestad Cockpit view via photopin (license)

About Michael Gass

Consultant | Trainer | Author | Speaker

Since 2007, he has been pioneering the use of social media, inbound and content marketing strategies specifically for agency new business.

He is the founder of Fuel Lines Business Development, LLC, a firm which provides business development training and consulting services to advertising, digital, media and PR agencies.

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