Ready – Fire – Aim, or commonly known as ‘Damn the torpedoes full steam ahead’ vs. ‘Analysis Paralysis’

‘What is a ‘Spinach helpful tip’? – When a friend tells you what you don’t know – especially when you don’t know it!

We’ve heard the phrase, ’Ready – Fire – Aim’ applied to employees, sales teams and organizations.  Steven Coats’ talks about describing organizations with this moniker in his article, ‘Ready, Fire, Aim!’ for International Leadership Associates in 2005 .
Ready - Fire - Aim - Arrows-Missing-Target - Golden Ratio Marketing - Demos 2 Go

How does this apply to the Market Driven Process? Can it apply to a Market Driven Organization?

When you read Coats’ article as well as other articles around ‘Ready-Aim-Fire‘  did you automatically think about your own organization? a vendor? a customer?  Who started looking for their dashboard?  What where the varied connotations it has across different organizations, and taking a step further what does it mean based upon the environment they operate in?

I think everyone would agree its very important to learn from your SWOT analysis, your dashboards and that it can be different for startups, struggling entrepreneurs, established organizations and heavily regulated environments vs non-regulated environments.

Some organizations can be described as ‘take charge, full speed ahead, take no prisoner’s‘ who proudly tattoo their motto, “damn the torpedoes full speed ahead”.

From the outside we see these organizations plowing money into new tools for their marketing technology stack without assessing fit and compatibility, chasing false leads, wasting resources on the wrong customers, overreacting to market activities and missing real opportunities by a wide mark.

These ‘we don’t have time to waste‘ organizations who feel doing research, targeting and segmenting their business better have deep pockets to survive.  If you look at the yin to their yang we have their antithesis who are trapped in ‘analysis paralyses’.

Analysis paralyses‘, the perfect way to describe organizations who bury their head Kick-the-Can-Game - Golden Ratio Marketing - Demos 2 Goin the sand waiting for a unanimous consensus.  You probably have all met with, worked with or been frustrated by these Leaders and organizations who can’t or wont make a decision. These are the one’s who love to ‘kick the can down the road‘.  It’s a different type of war-gaming, one that originally sold by Remco.
Organizations’ unable to make a decision and move out of the initial steps in the Market Driven Process of information gathering and analysis often go down the same path waiting for buggy whips to make a comeback, they’re sure of it,  they just need to do a little more research and have 100% agreement from everyone.

In a Market Drive Organization your decision point needs to be somewhere in the middle as Steven Coats shared in his article:

 As you might suspect, the best answer lies somewhere in the middle. Even in our overworked, no time for anything world, it is unconscionable to take a position that there is no time to think. On the other hand, it is just as ruinous to get caught up in endless analysis, thus deferring or avoiding decisions that must be made quickly. The best decisions are made with an appropriate balance of thinking and action.

Here is the link for his entire article:

In our upcoming Spinach Helpful Tips we’ll continue discussing best practices for Leaders and the Market Driven Process, ‘information gathering’ then converting Information into Data, and Data into Insights. We will touch upon testing those insights with war games and customer feedback then turning them into Action to fuel your Organizations Market Driven Process.

We’ve need to get ‘Ready’ with research and information gathering, but before we blast off and ‘Fire’ or take any action and allocate resources we need to make sure we’re focusing on strategy and taking ‘Aim’ at the right opportunities. The importance of targeting and segmentation and how we allocate resources will determine whether we’re optimizing our ROI and in today’s environment keeping your ‘jobs’.

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Steven Coats shared later in his article:

Breakthrough strategies seldom just show up on your desk. They come from a lot of thinking, debating and analyzing them from a number of different perspectives. And then they are validated and strengthened with testing, experimenting, prototyping and other necessary actions. As a leader, you must encourage both innovative thinking and hands-on experimentation if you expect to keep up with your competition.

Here’s where the proverbial rubber meets the road as we begin to align what we do with what our customers need and value. As an organization have we sat down and categorized our customers based upon their potential value and how do you accomplish that? Have we taken the time to determine the customers perceived values relative to what your organization offers?

Q: Does your organization’s follow a Ready-Fire-Aim philosophy?

Q: Who leads the targeting and segmentation process within your organization as part of the Market Driven Process?

As we go through the process please provide your insights and thoughts so we have a more robust dialogue and don’t walk around with spinach in our teeth.

What is a ‘Spinach helpful tip’?                                  Popeye Spinach

Have you ever walked around with something in your teeth, and no one tells you. A real friend takes you to the side and tells you. It may be embarrassing at first but not as bad as finding out at the end of the day when it is too late to do anything about it. Especially if you are trying to create a positive brand image and lead your organization to success!

Best regards,

Chris A. Marshall

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