When you hear the word colonoscopy, what comes to mind? An enjoyable way to spend an afternoon? Something to do with friends? Or maybe you think of it as time well spent?
Chances are, just like me, you’re thinking quite the opposite.
You hear the word colonoscopy and start thinking “run away,” “not today,” and “no effing way,” right? And that’s okay. You don’t have to like colonoscopies, you don’t have to be happy about colonoscopies, but you do, at some point in your life, need one.
So why am I causing you anxiety by talking about one of the most dreaded elective medical tests recommended for adults age 50 and over? Aren’t I supposed to be helping you with your business?
Surprise! I actually am talking about business. And strategists. And that’s because the right strategist should perform a “colonoscopy” on your business.
Gauging your health
Just like medical colonoscopies give your doctor a full picture (literally) of your intestinal health and possibly save your life, a business colonoscopy gives your strategist the information they need to save your business. Isn’t the role of a strategist to effectively diagnose, treat and solve potentially serious business issues? To get a complete, unedited look at your business from every possible angle to find opportunities for improvement?
So why would you stand in their way?
A strategist will start their analysis with an in-depth look at every component of your business. They should leave no file folder unturned, no hard drive unscrubbed. The information gleaned during this painstaking process is the key to your future success (or failure). Again, a business colonoscopy must be done completely … with full access to the good and the bad.
This process, just like a medical colonoscopy, is often uncomfortable and never pretty. You have an outsider poking around your employees, your infrastructure and your assets. And, naturally, your protective. But the more the strategist leans in, the greater the impact they’ll have on increasing your revenues and profits.
Complete and total access
Allowing your strategist complete access to your assets will pay off when they identify ways to cut costs and increase margins. But you do need to be prepared for the worst.
Because your business’ colonoscopy may uncover things you don’t want to know. They could be minor, a few issues here and there but nothing to worry about. Or there could be something that has the potential to ruin you or your company.
Either way, ignorance isn’t bliss. You have to know everything — the good, the bad and the ugly — to give your business a fighting chance to survive.
Finding the “revenue bleed” (if there is one!)
So what kind of issues are we talking about? Well, many times the strategist finds what I call a “revenue bleed.” A revenue bleed can be a good or service for which you’re undercharging and, as a result, you’re losing money. Or the strategist may identify a resource you’re paying for that adds no value to your business. And whether that is the monthly fee for a particular software or a person who no longer fits your business plan, you have to let go. This can happen when soft costs (like employee time) aren’t factored into pricing.
Depending on the good or service and its importance to the overall revenue stream, this news can be devastating. But without the skill of your strategist to point out revenue bleeds, you won’t have time to pivot before the effects are fatal.
So not only is your strategist your diagnosing physician, they’re your pharmacist, too! They can, no matter how dire the scenario, assess the situation and prescribe a workable solution to save your ass (literally).