Written by Deborah Rozman, President and CEO of Quantum Intech, Inc. (dba HeartMath Inc.) Wednesday, 01 June 2011 10:28
The 2009 Wall Street economic meltdown, from which we are still reeling, awakened companies to a need for more collaborative business models to ensure their future. Nathan Washburn’s article, “Why Profit Shouldn’t be Your Top Goal,” Harvard Business Review 2009, reported that managers in 17 nations realized higher financial gains when focusing on stakeholders — investors, employees, customers, partners, etc. — rather than on profit alone. Yet, entrenched corporate boards and engrained corporate cultures often find it hard to take a “leap of faith” into collaborative practices.
Here are four easy tips.
At HeartMath, our collaborative strategy for product and program development has been to assess key societal challenges and identify opportunities for positive impact, and then provide identical or similar programs and products to multiple sales channels. We do this through direct sales and through partners who have stronger market penetration into a particular channel. This has enabled us to keep our focus and at the same time successfully weather economic downturns in any one channel. Here’s an example: corporate training in stress management was one of our key sales channels that dried up after September 11, 2001 as companies cut back. We were able to successfully refocus our program for the hospital channel which needed to reduce absenteeism. Our partners helped us achieve this. Now, corporate training in stress management to reduce employee health care costs is a strong channel for us once again.
You can evolve a collaborative strategy for your company that will provide more innovation and economic stability through today’s rapidly changing times.