As you continue conversations about starting or revamping your author business, you will want to talk about business drivers, also called strategic drivers.
Here’s another excerpt (updated) from the book Building A Business, Building A Life: Incredible Stories of Women Entrepreneurs (Bonnie Daneker, Tana Gildea et al.) which may be helpful.
Mr. Fu Manchu and the Three Drivers
On the third day of my MBA program, my strategy professor barked out words that would be, thereafter, etched in my brain. Mind you, I questioned if he should be standing in front our class in the first place, much less teaching us about strategy. Picture this: a five-foot-five, poet-shirted, leather-vested, earcuff-donning, Fu Manchu-sporting twenty- or thirty-something, smirking at the fifty of us seasoned executives.
Looks aside, he quickly won me over with the erudite words spilling out of his mouth. Like I said, forever etched in my brain. And what was he talking about? The types of business strategic drivers: product innovation, operational excellence, and customer intimacy. These are categories of what makes your company special and makes it a market leader. When you’re forming your author company, you’ll need to consider what you want to be known for in the market.
Product innovation, he explained is the dominant driver present in companies, like Apple, when the market expects the company to forge new, exciting products. Then there’s operational excellence, when the market banks on the company’s efficiency and low prices, much like what Walmart is known for. And the third, he continued, is customer intimacy, when companies, like The Ritz-Carlton, promise anticipation of customer needs and absolute satisfaction. These are the only three, he promised.
The Best Driver
Successful companies usually have one driver, with an overlay of a second driver, like Sharp Electronics driving with product innovation and an overlay of operational excellence to deliver and sell worldwide. One driver is not necessarily better than the other, nor are any of the combinations stronger or weaker, but our choices of drivers for our businesses need to align with our market and our competition, he told us. Our companies, large or small, have to be crystal clear on what our strategic drivers are to enable us to make business decisions supporting that strategy.”
So, What’s the Best Driver for the Business Built Around Your Book?
Clients of The Author’s Greenhouse expect customer intimacy with an overlay of operational excellence. We work with you to anticipate your needs and help you produce the best product possible, given your time frames, budget, and resource requirements. As our clients write and produce their books, we consult with them about building a business around those books – selling the books, their content, and their expertise.
As you craft your content, begin to think about how you would like to be known in the market – primarily as a product expert, a services star, or an operations guru. After you decide that focus, or a combination of two, you’ll be able to name the best business driver and make careful decisions on extending your content and building the business around your book, based on your strategic vision. Read more about strategic drivers here, and contact us if you’d like us to help you plan your content and construct your business.