Sometimes prospective clients ask me how I would work with them. My answer is typically, it depends.
It depends on the outcomes I’m being asked to produce and the value to the company and the person hiring me. Interestingly, many companies contact me to assess and align marketing efforts that aren’t producing the desired results.
I start with asking questions to help the client more clearly identify the root of the problem. Oftentimes, what they share makes it clear that while marketing may share some of the blame, underperformance can also be attributed to back end operations which aren’t aligned to satisfy Hispanics’ needs.
Clients quickly recognize the importance of taking a more comprehensive approach to the alignment work, which means involving key line and functional stakeholders.
Sometimes, there is concern about bandwidth and about existing priorities; however, my clients are often surprised at how receptive other parts of the organizations are to participating in a project that will help optimize the company’s success among Hispanics and their own results.
Sometimes, other stakeholders have already been thinking along the same lines. Some have been doing their own exploratory work, and others are secretly glad to be involved so they aren’t surprised when changes come down the pike as a mandate without the benefit of their input.
Once the project starts, my role is one of facilitator and guide. A recent client shared that her leadership asked if the company had gotten their money’s worth from the project and my buyer has shared with me, that for the first time she had experienced true collaboration among her team members.
This collaboration helped members of the team take clear and actionable steps towards executing the tactics we have developed. This led to strong and successful project outcomes which were even beyond her expectations. My client said she was sure that if this would have involved just her team and if the output would have been generated without team participation, the strategy document would have been heard, but she doubts if it would have been owned by the respective area stakeholders. As a result of team involvement, the recommendations continue to be integrated and acted upon. I believe that working with the team that controls all the “pulleys and levers” of successful implementation from the beginning is fundamental and leads to a well supported and enduring strategy.