(by Graham Kenny – founder of Strategic Factors)
I was once appointed CEO of a company in need of a turnaround. We made trusses and frames for houses, and one morning, after I’d been on the job about three months, I found myself staring out my window, watching the trucks and forklifts below. I thought: What am I doing here? Can I, on the fingers of one hand, list the ingredients of success in this industry?
In the weeks and months that followed, the senior management team and I made a number of major decisions about the company’s future. As a team, I observed, we were busy doing things and making changes, all of which made sense to us as managers. But as time progressed, I returned to these questions, over and over: How well do we know what our customers want? How well do we know what our suppliers and employees expect? What would it take to meet those needs better than our competitors could?