Tag Archives: strategy

How to manage change

The big question is how to manage change? Well, it is not a matter of time; it’s a matter of commitment.

If you want to provoke change, create a proper culture. Instead of taking control, give it away. For you to create an appropriate culture, you must reduce control systems. Control is achieved when people control themselves.

Don’t give orders, but ask questions like: What would you do? What do you suggest? It’s not an easy task, but you must control your tendency towards giving orders or transmitting messages that undermine the dignity and responsibility of your subordinates.

Don’t just preach and hope a proper culture will develop itself; you must cultivate it and implement schemes that bestow authority and allow each employee to feel entitled. You must be very clear on whose responsible for avoiding the employee’s tendency towards delegating decisions to upper levels. Give the authority to decide to those who receive information, instead of moving data towards the authority, move the authority towards the information.

How to manage change formula

There’s a natural resistance to change that makes many strategies fail. To create change in your organization, you must apply the following formula:

Amount of change = Dissatisfaction + Vision + Process – Cost of change

Dissatisfaction: to create the change, you must produce an atmosphere of dissatisfaction with the current situation and generate feelings of need for change. On occasion, setting a sense of urgency works.

Vision: a compelling vision is an excellent ally for change. An ambitious challenge bonds the team together and stimulates it to reach the goal.

Don’t try to convince others on the need for change with numbers and statistics; do it with visual evidence as visuals are compelling. Make the team personally experience the pain that the current way of operating makes the client feel.

Process: Involve your employees in the decision. The change will be seen as the enemy when you suggest it to your team but will be embraced as an opportunity if your team proposes it. They’re the ones who must set their own goals, so they’ll commit themselves, and you can demand their completion on the dates set for each challenge.

Don’t try to change everything all at once. Break down your ultimate goal into smaller, specific, and achievable objectives. You can’t eat an elephant all at once, but you can do it piece by piece. Start with a leg. Use metrics and short-term milestones to gauge progress.

Cost of change: to create the change, you must first understand the points of resistance: What do people lose with this change? It’s natural for there to be resistance because you’re taking them out of their comfort zone. People are comfortable with what’s familiar, and anything new makes them anxious. 

When you have everybody on board, you must create small victories, point them out, and celebrate them. Small goals lead to small victories, which in turn trigger a virtuous circle of behavior. Above all, you must over-communicate.

One piece of the puzzle

Managing your work crew and employees is one of the essential pillars of the strategy of your company. Nevertheless, it is necessary to acknowledge that it doesn’t end here. As the world is continuously changing, managers have to know how to manage change.

There are many other aspects to take into consideration when building up your strategy for a valuable company. We invite you to download for free the bestseller book written by our Chairman, Enrique Quemada, which will guide you through the most critical points of a solid strategy.

How to build  a more profitable company through the FIT strategy and may other elements.

Discover the eight elements of the business puzzle, and all they contain, to build a valuable company.

Learn how to execute your strategy and maximize the price of your company as never before.

Download for free the bestselling book: "FIT: STRATEGY, VALUE, AND PRICE"

Please fill out the form and enjoy the book written by our Chairman, Enrique Quemada.


We will keep you informed of the latest news

Clear documentation

Having a clear profitability model

Having a clear profitability model is very important. It explains how a company makes money while creating value for the client at the same time. The business model should not only help you to serve your client distinctively, but it must also pursue that the company gains a high return for shareholders.

The DuPont formula helps you to make decisions on strategy and the business model because it combines the three components for creating value: margin, efficiency (asset rotation), and indebtedness (balance structure).

  • ROE = Margin * Asset Rotation * Balance Structure

This translates into:

  • ROE = (Profit / Sales) * (Sales/Assets) * (Assets/Equity)

3 elements of  a clear profitability model

You must understand which of these three elements is your true engine for creating value, and know-how you must compete. You must identify your profitability model and be coherent with it. Some companies compete through their high sales margins (Google). Others, through asset rotation (Walmart) or leverage, by using little capital and substantial debt (Banks).

Margin (Profit / Sales): tells how much money I make as profit for each dollar I earn. It’s the result of income minus expenses. Anything that lowers costs and increases income improves the margin.

Efficiency (Asset rotation): allows you to know how much money you make for each dollar in your balance. Some companies make money by rotating merchandise several times a year. If you have a low margin for each product unit you sell but sell it many times, you end up making a lot of money. This is what happens in supermarkets.

Balance structure (Assets/Equity): allows you to make money with a smaller investment since the cost of debt is lower to the cost of capital.

Return on equity (ROE) is the result of the income model (how much it charges and how it charges it), the cost structure, the margin per customer, and the speed of use of resources.

Does it end with having a clear model?

Having a solid business model is just one of the eight blocks of the success puzzle, according to the book FIT: Strategy, Value, and Prize written by our Chairman, Enrique Quemada. 

If you want to know how to build an excellent strategy for successfully managing your company, be sure to get into the following topics:

  • Having a solid mission, vision, and set of values. 
  • How to design a leadership strategy for your company.
  • Create the right working culture in your business.
  • How to execute your strategy.

These topics and more are all available in the downloadable e-book below.

Download for free the bestselling book: "FIT: STRATEGY, VALUE, AND PRICE"

Please fill out the form and enjoy the book written by our Chairman, Enrique Quemada

How to build  a more profitable company through the FIT strategy and may other elements.

Discover the eight elements of the business puzzle, and all they contain, to build a valuable company.

Learn how to execute your strategy and maximize the price of your company as never before.


We will keep you informed of the latest news

Four Ways to Evaluate When It’s Right to Take Your Businesses Global

When to Take Your Business Global

While taking your business global holds the promise of new markets, a larger client base, and bigger profits, no company should rush headfirst without adequate preparation. In a previous article on One to One Corporate Finance we discussed ways for investors to evaluate the best business to buy. In this instalment, we would like to provide you with four ways you can evaluate whether your business is ready to move from the local to the international market.

Have You Chosen the Right Market to take your business global?

Before plunging your business into a foreign market, ask yourself which market is the right one for your operation? Is it established enough locally to support your expansion, and have you done the necessary market research and chosen the right country and segment to penetrate? Entry into foreign markets can be costly and consume vast management time and resources, doubly so if the country’s economy is stagnating. Expanding into a country like the UK for example, which is going through economic uncertainty due to the fallout from Brexit, might not be propitious to your new foreign operation. Nadex documeted that there has been underlying weakness in the Pound due to the flagging UK economy. The Financial Times also reported that one in seven European companies with UK suppliers had moved their business out of Britain as a result of this uncertainty. Once you’ve weighed these factors and chosen wisely, only then can you set your sights internationally.

Is Your Product Ready to take your business global?

Once you’ve determined how to set a proper foothold locally, you must now look at your product and determine whether it is ready for international exposure, or are there issues that might hold you back? Based on the product gap analysis, it is essential you take the necessary steps to make your product market-ready. Fast Company recommend being prepared re-think your product strategy, as it may not be a sure hit the first time. Determine whether product localisation is required in your target market, and initiate a patent and trademark review to protect your intellectual property and ensure you’re complying with local standards. If you fail the first time it could be an indication that you didn’t take the right approach to fully localise the product. Go back to the drawing board and rethink your strategy.

Organisational Readiness & Operations

You’ve now determined your product is ready for international exposure, the next step is to take into consideration the cultural differences, regulations, and customs of your target market. Business journalist Michael Evans suggests that a company must be flexible in the policies and procedures it implements in international operations. This will ensure that the company’s vision is being executed effectively. Policies and procedures must be in place to comply with local labour and employment standards. You must also decide on the appropriate level of direct presence in the region to manage your operation; will you need local partners to handle specific aspects, or will you be self-sufficient and dependent on your own staff? Some companies need their sales and support teams on the ground for example. Depending on the nature of your operation, your needs will vary.

You Have Suppliers & Customers

Having taken into consideration the company requirements, it’s time to consider your supply chain as well as marketing and customer base. Entrepreneur reveals that it’s essential to be able to find trustworthy suppliers who will deliver and adhere to agreed payment terms, as it will be vital to your international success and your ability to deliver to your customers. Having a reliable supply chain in place will guarantee that your product will reach your customers. As such, by providing a reliable middleman to facilitate secure transaction, your customers will feel comfortable sending money to a foreign company with which they have never worked with before, and you’ll rest easy knowing that you will receive those payments in exchange for your products. Once you’ve determined the necessary platforms and supply chain possibilities, you’re ready to consider the next steps in your global expansion.


How to create a winning mentality in business

A Winning Mentality in Business: How to Create it

Successful entrepreneurs are bold and audacious in their goal setting. If you want to create a winning mentality in business, start thinking big. The larger the audience you can connect with, the more relevant your organization will become.

It seems obvious to suggest that in order to achieve goals, you must set them first. Goals are only dreams until you set deadlines and plans for yourself.

Sir Edmund Hillary, the first person to ever reach the top of Everest, once said, what we conquer is not the mountain but ourselves. If you want to change reality, you need to dream.

Many people live in a world of “what is possible” instead of “what could be possible.” The thought of someone running a mile under four minutes was impossible, until one man proved it to be false.

Roger Bannister believed in himself and achieved the impossible. Three years later, nine additional athletes achieved the same feat, with each of them adopting the mindset that the task was no longer impossible. Things are only seen as impossible until someone decides to change that mentality.

Destiny is not a matter of chance; it is a matter of choice. It is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to pursue.

As such, nothing spectacular has ever truly been achieved without passion; it is only with genuine passion that one can unlock and surpass their goals.

An essential part of creativity is not to be afraid of failure. Success is not built on success, it’s built on failure. Failure is the key to success because every failure teaches us something. Winston Churchill pointed out that success is the consequence of going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm.

Andy Grove, chairman of Intel, said that success feeds complacency and complacency feeds failure. And so it is, when arrogance appears decadence begins.


If you do not have big dreams for your company, if you do not have maintain bold goals, if you do not create a winning mentality, then maybe it is time to think about selling your company. Do not hesitate to contact our team for advice!


Acquisition of Small Companies as a Source of Innovation for Large Companies

Source of Innovation for Large Companies

We are in a business world where every day there is more competition and more challenges for companies. It is in this complex environment that innovation transforms into the primary source for competitive advantages.

Recall that a competitive advantage is a characteristic that develops companies and allows them to differentiate themselves from the competition and gain success. Within these competitive advantages you will find examples of brands, cost efficiency, patents, FDA or other sanitary registrations, the control or access to distribution channels, as well as the know how and capacity to create innovative products.

In many cases, a source of innovation is the acquisition of start ups or medium-sized companies becomes the perfect accessory to R&D (research and development) departments of large companies. As Cisco’s president and CEO John Chambers says, “If you don’t have the resources to develop a component or product within six months, you must buy what you need or miss the opportunity.”

I continually find myself with entrepreneurs that are developing ground breaking products and disruptive technologies with the capacity to generate important changes in the world. A disruptive technology is one that has the capacity to change an industry, for example the scanner practically put an end to fax and the digital camera was the end for roll photography, at least in non-professional photography. Some leading companies in the world know this, and are continually acquiring companies as a source of innovation, for example Facebook acquired Instagram, Unilever acquired the razor blade company Dollar Shave Club which reinvented how to deliver their products to the consumer with a cost leadership strategy, Johnson & Johnson licensed the technology for stents from Dr. Julio Palmaz, and Apple acquired the headphones and music by subscription service, Beats by Dr. Dre. Others missed their opportunity, for example Blockbuster refused to associate with Netflix in 2000 and Yahoo had no interest in acquiring Google for US $1M in 1998.

In the same way, often times I encounter large companies that aren’t interested or aren’t analyzing the possibility of acquiring a small or medium-sized company because it does not have a significant EBITDA or income that can significantly impact the financial statements.

“It can be hard for big corporations to promote invention. You cannot prove in advance that any new idea will work….In other words, they’re willing to pay a pretty big markup for not having to take that risk on themselves.”

If you are an executive of an important company, I invite you to consider allocating part of your resources within your innovation strategy to the investment of start-ups that have the potential to be completely acquired when they are in a more mature phase and that can be integrated into your company by accessing your distribution channels and commercial strength.

“In essence, [such an open-innovation tactic is about letting] ‘the little people invent’ and then helping commercialize the innovation through the resources of a much bigger company.”

In emerging countries, in my case Colombia, we are behind in R&D and innovation for companies both large and small. According to World Bank3, our country invests only 0.20% of GDP (gross domestic product) in these areas, while Japan invests 3.58% and South Korea 4.3%. It is therefore necessary to pay attention to this issue which can have a transcendental impact on the future results of your company and on the ability to generate new competitive advantages.

Written by Simón Restrepo Barth, professor of Finances and Partner of ONEtoOE Corporate Finance with collaboration by Julie Steppan, Investment Banking Analyst.


1. Bower, Joseph. “Not All M&A’s Are Alike – and That Matters”, Harvard Business Review, March 2001.
2. Vella, Matt. “Innovation Through Acquisition”, Bloomberg, February 2008.
3. “Research and Development expenditure (% of GDP)”, United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Institute for Statistics. http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/GB.XPD.RSDV.GD.ZS, 9 June 2017.

How to decide who your target customer is

Target customer, who is it?

Do you know how to decide who your target customer is? In this article we give you some suggestions to help you answer this question. We will also talk about how to deal with competitors after having analyzed what the customers want.

What kind of customer do you want to serve?

You must choose which type of customers you want to serve to identify which will be your target customer. Wanting to serve everyone is a mistake, just like it would be to cover all the needs in your customer segment, or trying to imitate every new idea. There are many companies living a “herding behaviour”, following the leader’s steps and comfortable in vulgarity.

Reflect on which customer segment your company has a great potential to create a unique offer that covers a type of unattended need. Once discovered, be willing to renounce on the other types of customers that don’t have such a need for that service.

Insurance company Progressive discovered a poorly-served collective. Those with an alcohol abuse or risk behaviour history had great difficulty in being accepted by insurance companies. They tackled this collective, which had few alternatives, and which, in turn, allowed them to charge higher premiums. Thanks to their ability for handling information, they were able to identify segments within this collective that didn’t pose such a risk, like drivers with a drinking history but also parents with small kids.

In order to add real value to your target customer, you must step in the customers’ shoes and understand their behaviour. Try to understand the psychological reasons behind their purchases. You must feel how they feel. Don’t project your feelings to the market. Think about their concerns, needs, preferences, thoughts, hopes, relationships and daily routines. It is important to see them in action. How are your customers? What are their personalities like? Whom do they identify with? What are their hopes? How do they see themselves?

When Gillette decided to approach the Indian market, they asked the product design team to spend a few weeks living with the potential users. The designers resisted because they thought that they didn’t have anything more to learn about shaving razors. Upon returning from the trip, one of them, an Indian-American, acknowledged that by watching an Indian shave in his village, without any water nearby, he realized that he had a completely wrong idea of the optimal design for a shaver for India. He understood that he had to design parts that allowed for larger spaces between blades so that, while shaving without water, hair would not get stuck between the razor blades and hinder the shaver’s functionality.

Try to think like customers do. Don’t focus only on the features of the product or service, but in the benefit to the customers, on how they perceive it, on the psychological value. What do customers really value? What touches their core?

Target Customers are your strategic assets

I recommend that you see your customers as strategic assets and innovate around them, not around your products or services. Instead of thinking about the product used by the customers, think about the problems they have to address. Customers don’t buy a drill, they buy a hole, they don’t buy a service, but a solution. We don’t have to think about the service they want but about the solution they’re after. It requires empathy, understanding the feelings of a type of users and their frustrations. That’s why many business models have been born out of users’ frustrations.

Dropbox is an example. It was founded in April 2007 by Drew Houston, a 27-year-old man. The idea came to him while on a bus, when he realized he had forgotten his pen drive. He decided to program a service for synchronizing and sharing files between computers on the Internet. This way, he could always have access to the latest version of documents.

Every job has a functional, emotional and social dimension. How do I help customers do their job? You must decide who will be and who won’t be your customers. Ask yourself: Who are my direct customers? Who are my final customers? What issues do they have? What can I do to address these issues? How do these customers use existing products to satisfy their needs? What can make me different in a way that makes these customers interested? And ask them: What makes you buy this product? What’s it missing? Why don’t you recommend it to your friends? To make customers be your fans you must give an overabundance of the feature they value the most. Focus your efforts on attracting and engaging fans – those who can be most interested and loyal. They will help you spread the message among their peers. Turn them into your army. It’s about closing the space between problem and solution. But be careful, you must solve real problems, not ones created by you.

Maybe you can create a new class of customers that didn’t exist before, like FedEx did when they developed a new market for those who wanted their packages to arrive in just one day, guaranteed.

Curves, the fitness-club chain, realized there was a type of customers, women, that didn´t have their needs covered when practicing sports, and created a solution for them. In traditional chains, with sophisticated machinery, customers worked out looking at television screens, without any interaction with others. The rooms were full of mirrors for customers to admire their figures. Muscular customers intimidated a segment of women who didn´t feel fit enough to show their bodies in that environment, or to follow aggressive fitness programs. Curves designed exclusive centres for women that didn´t need saunas, swimming pools or large installations, so they could be smaller and closer to home. The machines were simple, arranged in a circle to encourage conversation between them, in an intimate space, without any mirrors, only for women and with basic fitness programs. Many women felt attracted to this type of gyms. Since the required investment was smaller, subscription fees were also smaller, 70% cheaper than a traditional gym, allowing the centres to become popular for a collective that used to reject them because of price or of the distance to and from their homes.

What are your competitors doing?

After analyzing what the customers want and your capabilities, you must look at competitors and alternatives to see if there is something that will make you different in the eyes of those customers.

Naturally, the strategy is to satisfy the target customer and gain a profit while doing so, that’s why you must ask yourself if the customer is willing to pay the price you have to charge in order for it to be profitable for the company. Thus, it’s about creating value for your target customer and being capable of capturing value for yourself as well.

React to your need for capital before it is too late

React to your company’s need for capital before it is too late!

The need for an increase in capital to stay competitive is very common. It is possible that the business owner, especially when he or she is already in an advanced stage of life, will not be willing to reinvest capital that has already been extracted from the company and, before this, he prefers to exit the company.

The need for capital

If there has been, for example, a deterioration of capital from losses or because the company’s assets are arriving to the limit of their useful life there is a need for investment in modernization. Other times the company doesn’t generate enough free cash flow to undertake the investments. It needs to be competitive in an evolving business environment.

We had a client that owned a factory specializing in the manufacturing of machinery for food preservation. The company competed against large Swedish and American companies that, thanks to their investments in R&D, were constantly improving the productivity and sophistication of their machines. Our client was losing competitiveness and was destined to start seeing lower prices, yet he had a limited capacity for reinvestment. Fortunately he decided to sell before it was too late.

The company may need to invest money into soon to be obsolete technology in order to be viable, something that the owner doesn’t want or can’t do.

In some cases, slowly a snowball of debt is formed without you noticing. Equipment leases, operating capital lines of credit, equity lines and credit card bills now take up most of your free cash flow and you feel like you are working for the banks.

A third-generation business owner client of ours used to tell us, “if the interest rates go up, I am losing it all”. He ran the business that his Grandfather had started 45 years earlier, in early 2007 they decided to build a new manufacturing facility and leveraged the business to do it. Then the crash came, and interest rates skyrocketed while sales went down. They were able to survive the crisis and they continued to grow at double digit rates but their profits disappeared to service debt. We helped him refinance at better rates and then brought in a financial investor that made an equity investment which allowed him to keep growing his family’s legacy.

The time to get capital is now

If you have not been able to receive a dividend in years, a downturn in the economy can wipe out everything you worked for. We are today in a specially good moment to sell due to high prices, high liquidity and low interest rates. Do not miss this M&A wave because the next one might not come in decades – at least a wave as huge as this one.

This article was written by Enrique Quemada – President of ONEtoONE. Book: How to Maximize the price of my company


MBO: Buying a Company as an Executive

Handeling an MBO: Buying a company as an executive

As an executive in a company, such as its manager or director, you might think that the owners of your company would want to sell it to a third party instead of to you. On the other hand, there are a series of reasons that make it more logical for them to choose you for an MBO (management buy-out).

“A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.” – Spanish proverb

Why the business owner would rather sell to one of its executives (MBO)

The first reason is the confidentiality. This way, they do not publicize the sale of the company and can avoid unnecessary gossip from the competition. If an executive of the company is considering purchasing it, he or she will not play games because they know that their job is on the line.

On a different note, the executive knows what he or she is buying and will find less risk than an outsider. This will make the company more valuable to the executive (he or she is familiar with the company being bought so will discount less for risk).

Similarly, because the executive knows the company well, he or she will not have to do a very exhaustive due diligence, so the process could be much quicker.

When the buyer is that company’s executive, there is much less risk of the operation falling through due to misunderstandings because there tends to be knowledge and trust between the parties and will thus be able to find a way to reach an agreement. The business owner saves him or herself the arduous process of looking for, convincing, negotiating, and selling to an outsider.

The executive gives a guarantee of continuity for the company that outside buyers do not. The employees, suppliers, customers, and banks know the executive.

Therefore, even though the process is competitive, executives have more advantages because they better understand the value of the company and the maximum price that should be paid for it. The other potential buyers know this, and if there are business executives who are also contenders for the purchase, they tend to pull out from the process.

Managing the conflict

In an MBO, there is an inherent conflict since you are both the buyer and the manager/director.

The best way to deal with this problem is by being professional and working on the purchase outside of your business hours.

Another conflict is the price, your natural interest would be to buy it at the lowest price possible. However, you are taking a lot of risk; your job and the purchase are both on the line. Therefore, I recommend that you be careful not to let yourself be overtaken by greed, that you establish a fair price, and that you back it up with facts and data.

If you see any point of conflict, openly show it to the seller and create ways to find solutions. This way, you will have the confidence to find ways to fight the problems that may arise in the negotiations.

This article was written by Enrique Quemada – President of ONEtoONE Corporate Finance

Your might also be interested in “THE BUSINESS PLAN: THE PATHWAY TO BUY A COMPANY”.

Do you have a clear profitability model?

Do you have a clear profitability model?

The profitability model explains how a company makes money while creating value for the client at the same time. The business model should not only help you to serve your client distinctively, it must also pursue that the company gain a high return for shareholders.

How to identify your profitability model

The DuPont formula helps you to make decisions on strategy and business model, because it combines the three components for creating value: margin, efficiency (asset rotation) and indebtedness (balance structure).

ROE = Margin * Asset Rotation * Balance Structure

This translates into:

ROE = (Profit / Sales) * (Sales/Assets) * (Assets/Equity)

You must understand which of these three elements is your true engine for creating value, and know how you must compete. You must identify your profitability model and be coherent with it. There are companies that compete through their high sales margins (Google). Others, through asset rotation (Wal-Mart) or through leverage, by using little capital and large debt (Banks).

What does the DuPont formula mean?

Margin (Profit / Sales): tells how much money I make as profit for each dollar I earn. It´s the result of income minus expenses. Anything that lowers costs and increases income improves the margin.

Efficiency (Asset rotation): allows you to know how much money you make for each dollar in your balance. There are companies that make money by rotating merchandise several times a year. If you have a low margin for each product unit you sell, but sell it many times, you end up making a lot of money. This is what happens in large supermarkets.

Balance structure (Assets/Equity): allows you to make money with a smaller investment, since cost of debt is lower to the cost of capital.

Return on equity (ROE) is the result of the income model (how much it charges and how it charges it), the cost structure, the margin per customer and the speed of use of resources.

Once you have chosen a profitability model, shape your business model in alignment with it and don´t take any contradictory decisions.

This article was written by Enrique Quemada, ONEtoONE President.


Key to Creating Value in the Purchase of a Company


“The best brands never start out with the intent of building a great brand. They focus on building a great – and profitable – product or service and an organization that can sustain it.” – Scott Bedburry, branding consultant and CEO of Brandstream

If you detect a true opportunity, the key to success is not in buying the company but rather in creating value in addition to the purchase price. To see if that is possible, you should work on a plan that explains why it is an opportunity, what you are going to do, and how you are going to do it.

The strategic plan in the purchase of a company

The strategic plan consists of determining the competitive position that you want to obtain: how the company will go from where it is now to where you want to take it, what mission and vision you have for it, and what you will communicate to your team.

This has to do with the competitive strategy, the alignment of all of the organization with a common and clear focus that will allow you to differentiate yourself from your competitors and create value. The focus, a principle motive, as Jim Collins says in “Built to Last,” is the fundamental reason why your company exists. Apart from making money, it is the only thing that should not change in your company.

The more robust your strategy is, the easier it will be for all to achieve their goals; they will all be aligned in the same path. Keep in mind that strategic misalignments are what kill the efficiency of organizations. The result of this alignment is coherency; lost resources are the result of misalignments.

Your task as a leader will be to define this vision, making it tangible, memorable, and inspiring. To have a good strategic plan, you should deeply understand the competitive environment of the company, make the right assumptions, and design mechanisms that coordinate the key processes in the organization so that they function in an aligned matter toward a common goal.

Apart from this clear and focused strategic plan, you will redefine the products and services, marketing, operations, commercial model, type of professionals that it needs, compensation systems, and technological developments. When you align everything, you will achieve success, and the company will run like a machine.

Strategy and leadership

The vision should not impose but rather inspire. Your team should internalize it; if they do not buy into it, forget about having success as a company. In order to do this, leadership is crucial, since leading is helping others understand the strategy.

Team members love to have a leader with a clear strategic vision, although it is true that once you explain it to them, you should be absolutely coherent. The bigger the difference between what you say and what you do, the more disheartened your team will be. Each action that you take will have massive implications in your team’s morale, for good or bad. Your actions speak louder than words.

If you are ambiguous with the strategy, send mixed messages, or act inconsistently, this will always be interpreted negatively by your people. Therefore, be as clear as possible. A way to achieve this is by saying “no” to all opportunities that are not aligned with your strategy.

If you want to be successful, try to have everyone on board with the new project, rely on them, explain it to them, consult them, and listen to them. Strategic alignments are not achieved in the company leadership but rather in the face-to-face interactions with the employees. Be aware that there is always a tendency for people to feel left out. Fight against it.

If you want your company to grow much faster than its competitors, you will need more than a differentiation factor; you will need a radical differentiation factor, meaning that you find a new space in the market that you can possess and defend.

This article was written by Enrique Quemada, Chairman of ONEtoONE Corporate Finance Group.

If you are interested in learning more about buying a business, take a look at THE 10 MOST COMMON OBSTACLES WHEN BUYING A COMPANY.