In my experience of business turnaround, I have discovered that every struggling business has a blind spot of some sort. Spotting the mistakes that have been made and identifying why the business is failing is a task that needs fast action. An independent, unbiased approach is needed.
The blind spot may have been missed or ignored, particularly if the management team has a vested interest in the decisions that have been made.
There are many blind spot hotspots and below I outline my ultimate checklist:
- The wrong culture? This may play a significant factor in the blind spot
- The wrong market? Sounds ridiculous but not uncommon for a business trying to succeed and failing due to being in the wrong market
- The wrong leader? Aside from the obvious assumptions about a good or bad leader, some leaders might be more entrepreneurial than others or have different approaches to management that may just jar with the business they are trying to take forward. They may be more suited to a different type of business or sector
- The wrong model? A tweak in business model can make it successful once more. When I came to Briggs Equipment, I identified very quickly that the sales model is what was holding the company back and that a leasing and servicing model could be much more profitable
- The wrong decisions being missed or ignored if the management team has a vested interest in the decisions that have been made. No one will want to admit that a route they have established or advocated is wrong (egos can certainly get in the way!). It can also be the case that those on a management team will not want to ‘out’ a fellow leader and openly state when something they have initiated isn’t working.
A blind spot will greatly limit the success of a company, at best, and at worst will cause its demise – so when it comes to identification of it, one should be sure to make it a priority.