The above picture was a recent sighting from a small town in Butterworth, Penang, whereby the shop owner has ceased its noodle business. The shop's name was "Wong Fei Hung" (the name of a Cantonese martial artist). However the name carried another implied meaning of "ceasing business". Such a coincidence which i find it amusingly interesting to share.
Now let's go back to the topic - REALITY STORM.
It was reported that:
So many businesses are closing now for the same reason they've always closed -- They don't meet consumers' needs. We could end the discussion right there if need be. To be fair though, there are some other questions that also deserve answering, like why this is happening now and what should we do to sustain our business.
Success for any business is tricky in the current economy. For your business to remain viable, you have to beat the ferocious market forces and overcome volatility. In other words, you need competitive advantage and it must be sustainable and able to endure the test of time. Understanding your competitive advantage is critical to your survival. It is why you are in business. Keep in mind that what you do best is what draws customers to buy your product or service rather than those of your competitor’s.
THE RIGHT PEOPLE
Competitive advantage comes from what your people do (how they perform), not from what they know. How well does your company build or maintain a competitive edge?
Five challenges most organizations face in gaining competitive advantage include:
THE RIGHT BOSS
Of course, all these require a team of managers who can perform as a well organized management team and have an in-depth understanding of people’s basic needs and behaviors. Managers must be able to make your business vision a reality by developing employee’s abilities in team work, problem solving, and critical thinking. It is not enough to merely have a vision, your managers must be able apply corresponding actions to make it happen. A vision without corresponding action is merely a dream.
Corresponding action is derived from the organization’s mission statement. The mission statement will only drive competitive advantage if it is properly designed and cuts across the entire organization. Managers must apply critical thinking to all aspects of the organization and build a strong business case for decisions. Effective critical thinking takes into account sustainable competitive advantages of every process and opportunity.
Sustainable competitive advantage allows for the maintenance and improvement of your company’s competitive position in the market. It is an advantage that enables your business to survive against its competition over a long period of time. The advantage comes from your company’s unique skills and resources working together to implement strategies that competitors cannot implement as effectively.
Conclude my session with the quote from Martin Luther King, Jr:-
" One of the great liabilities of history is that all too many people fail to remain awake through great periods of social change. Every society has its protectors of status quo and its fraternities of the indifferent who are notorious for sleeping through revolutions. Today, our very survival depends on our ability to stay awake, to adjust to new ideas, to remain vigilant and to face the challenge of change. "
I’ll likewise assess the roles and responsibilities of leadership as they pertain to said reasons being leadership failures:
If leaders are in touch with the market it will be difficult to be caught by surprise. It is the responsibility of the leaders to make sure that the proper attention is given to innovation, business intelligence and market research to manage the risk of obsolescence and market changes.
2) The Inability to Attract and Retain Talent:
Great leaders surround themselves with great talent. They understand that talent begets more talent. If your company doesn’t possess the talent it needs to achieve its business objectives no one is to blame but leadership.
3) Toxic Culture:
The truth is nothing stifles productivity and creates conflict like a toxic culture. That said, a toxic culture simply cannot exist where good leadership is present and engaged.
4) Lack of Execution:
Everything drills down to execution, and ensuring a certainty of execution is job number one for executive leadership. CEOs or MDs who don’t focus on deploying the necessary talent and resources to ensure that the largest risks are adequately managed, or that the biggest opportunities are exploited have a leadership team destined for failure.
5) Lack of Character:
Doesn’t matter what your title is, if you don’t do the right things for the right reasons you will fail. Leaders who don’t display character won’t attract it or retain it in others. Leaders who fail to demonstrate a constancy of character won’t create trust, won’t engender confidence and won’t create loyalty.
SAM CONSULTING MALAYSIA