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Profitable growth does not occur as a result of planning or talking. Profitable growth can only be achieved through action. Action occurs as a result of execution.

Execution is about getting things done. It's what separates the doers from the talkers. Execution drives business success and should be the primary focus for manufacturers and distributors alike.

There are two components of execution: Focus & Alignment.

Focus

Focus is about getting everyone headed in one direction with a shared sense of purpose. Working relationships that lack focus are prone to drift — wandering off course and getting away from the main thing — profitable growth. Lack of focus in a working relationship creates a significant gap between what the manufacturer and distributor hope to achieve and what they actually accomplish.

Focus can be obtained by working to assure that both parties have a clear and common understanding about where the working relationship is headed. Both parties also need to agree on what their goals are and how they plan to accomplish these goals.

Alignment

Alignment is about making sure that the day-to-day activities of the manufacturer and distributor are connected to the goals of the working relationship.

Manufacturers and distributors involved in working relationships that lack alignment are always busy but they have a hard time seeing the connection between what they are doing and movement towards the goals of the working relationship. This creates a sense of disconnection which leads to a lack of trust and poor communication.

Improving alignment requires that a manufacturer and distributor take an objective look at their day-to-day activities in an effort to determine how they contribute to the accomplishment of their goals. They must then decide whether an activity should be improved, reduced, or eliminated altogether.

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