How adaptable is your corporate culture to not only talking the social business talk, but walking it?
Step One: Learn what’s involved in adopting, adapting and applying social business basics, including effective use of social media platforms and technologies which allow you to serve your internal and external customers more effectively.
Step Two: Take a long hard look at your current customer base. How do you currently serve them? How can you create a more stable and balanced customer base that’s bought into the concept of the social business?
Step Three: With a balanced customer base, your small to midsized social business stands a good chance of developing a solid base of loyal and retained customers. Everyone moves towards the finish line by collaboration.
Step Four: Expand your company’s reach via social business, leveraging referrals from your customer base.
Step Five: An agile social business has an entrepreneurial look and feel to it. The entrepreneurial social business model is like a set of Lego® blocks: its basic elements are assembled, converted and reassembled depending on the business, engineering, IT and manufacturing tasks at hand.
Is your own small to midmarket business model capable of entrepreneurial agility? Or are you hampered by a legacy structure and mindset which confine creativity and everyone’s ability to move across departmental and divisional silos?
You have been working hard to incorporate the elements of a solid social business strategy into your corporate culture. Inevitably some folks will start poking holes in your corporate silos. There’s tremendous benefit to be gained in creating customer-sensitive business and engineering outcomes, which are based on cross-functional collaboration.
Will your own small to midmarket business model accept the folks who come together in natural collaborative groups to brainstorm problems? Their activities lead to process improvement. Their internal entrepreneurial activities can lead to innovation.
Will your entrepreneurial business activities appear outside your current norm and your current comfort level? Will these individuals be branded as corporate heretics or internal entrepreneurs? Assets or liabilities?
Step Five in the evolution of your social business measures the impact information sharing has on how employees work together and how they engage customers in creating mutually beneficial business outcomes.
How do you create an entrepreneurial social business culture for your small to midsized business? Your first steps involve generating opportunities for people to become part of cross-functional project teams. This strategy keeps everyone on their toes: they will move one millimeter outside their comfort levels. Remember those Lego blocks?
Depending on where we sit around the business, design, engineering or manufacturing table, we all “see” the same things, differently. What better way to move your small to midsized business forward than by sharing information in an entrepreneurial, collaborative atmosphere?
The results are in your own business outcomes, as well as those of your customers. You begin to become more nimble, competitive and robust within the global marketplace.
Babette Ten Haken, Founder & President of Sales Aerobics for Engineers®, LLC is a catalyst for small to midsized businesses transitioning forward, startups in search of growth strategies and professionals who want to develop cross-functional, collaborative core competencies for their next career move.