History: This Atlanta-based marketing firm officially opened its doors in February of 2006. It was a single operator organization who partnered with a number of vendors to provide a number of ancillary services, such as graphic design, printing and event management. The owner has approximately 20 years of experience as a marketer. She envisions providing services to the greater Southeastern United States. She had also hoped to obtain office space for the organization. She needed us to help architect her business for the future. Situation: In 2007, when we began working with the company, the owner indicated that she had achieved the goals she had established in her 2007 business plan, and was interested in creating a strategic plan for the organization. At the same time, she felt that she was reaching capacity, in terms of what she could manage by herself, and needed direction on how to increase the organization’s ability to handle more clients, effectively.
- Business Assessment – We needed a good understanding of the organization and the owner’s vision for the organization. As part of the assessment process, we were able to work with the owner to develop a realistic vision for the organization, framed by the organization’s mission, vision and values statements. The vision for the organization includes becoming a million dollar organization within the next two years.
- Defined and addressed deficits – Our belief is that great organizations have great foundations. From our assessment, we were able to identify opportunities for the organization to make better use of its resources and promote its true strengths.
- Business Architecture – Based on the vision for the organization and the business assessment, we were able to begin process mapping for the organization. This allows the organization to automate certain processes and simplify or eliminate certain steps, saving time and money.
- Job descriptions – we worked with the owner to identify positions to fulfill organizational needs. These positions serve only to further the organization’s belief statements
- Virtuality – we helped the organization establish a virtual presence, allowing members of the organization and clients to work in real time with members of each project team, and communicate openly and regularly over the internet, with access to shared workspace, documents, project status and updates, calendars and assignments
- Outsourcing – we helped more toward eliminating tasks that are outside the core processes of the organization. This will eventually include payroll, bookkeeping and possibly bill pay, at some point. Additional outsourcing is in administrative and operational services, allowing the organization to focus on providing outstanding marketing services
- Business Development – the organization moved from being a tactical marketer, providing one-time services to being a strategic marketing firm, with engagements that typically last a year and include a number of products and services.
- The organization now has clear, transferable mission, vision and values statements
- The owner provides very clear direction for the organization, its employees and vendors, and ensures that each aligns their task with the vision for the company
- The organization is more efficient, and is able to take on more clients and serve them more properly than ever before
- The organization now has four permanent employees, in addition to the owner and its per project 1099 contractors, who have added to the organization’s capacity
- The organization has clear goals
- The organization is a learning organization, that gathers knowledge and information from all members of the organization