One of the major challenges for strategic leadership is constantly updating their analysis and research of the competitive and industrial environment in which they work. Here I’ll show you what areas of analysis leaders should be focusing on, no matter which industry they work in.
The key to defining any business growth or innovation strategy within a firm is being able to analyze the current situation in your company & competitive market forecasting future trends. This requires analyzing a number of different areas. The following is a list of key analysis points which all strategic leadership should be focusing on:
- Business trends - Leaders need to be looking at a broad range of technological and industry changes which are affecting their sales and marketing. Information can come from customer research, market research and business analysts. Analyze this data to see what rising trends are occurring which the firm could position themselves in. Create a chain of command within the company to establish effective communication in the workplace of trends and opportunities.
- Market analysis – Your marketing team should be keenly aware about the current state of the economic market in which you are competing. This includes awareness of pricing trends, product lines, etc. It is important to evaluate these trends over time to see whether they are rising or falling to establish at what point on the S-curve your product lines are at.
- Competition - Strategic leadership need to be keenly aware of what threats they face from external competition. This includes existing competitors in their space as well as new entrants to the market which may be using technological trends in order to gain an advantage over larger competition.
- Market segmentation – In many industries it should be possible to segment target customer types, locales and industry. You have to consider what types of markets you currently target using your product range and decide what new channels, customers or market locations you could start focusing upon. This is often a good way to invigorate new sales channels or refactor products for new industries.
- Positioning - Similar to market segmentation, you need to evaluate how your strategic leadership choices are positioning your products and company brand. This should be in keeping with your overall vision/mission statement and align with whatever value proposition you’re trying to deliver upon. If it is not, or your company should be focusing on a different positioning slant, then management will need to reevaluate a number of different departments focus.