Do you have the edge you need to compete and win new business? We’ve found that firms struggle with many of the same issues—building effective business development leadership and culture, implementing consistently, developing the right skills, measuring results and establishing accountability.
Read the scenarios below – if you recognize your firm in any of them, click the (+) and read more about what might be causing the situation and how Whetstone can help.
This is a pretty common situation in professional service firms. If you’re operating without a formal marketing/sales plan, often there are many different opinions and approaches, a lot of ad hoc activity, everything sounds like a good idea, and you often don’t know if any of it is working.
The Whetstone Group can get your leadership on the same page, align your business development activity with your growth opportunity, and build a plan that will be measurable and get results. We can start the process with an assessment of what you’re doing now and provide recommendations for how you can improve your ROI. Click here to learn more.
Everyone in your firm should play a role in your growth – but it may just be they aren’t sure what to do or how to do it. Check out our web-based business development training available for all levels of staff. We’ll help your professionals understand their role in your firm’s business development efforts, determine what they should be doing, and develop the skills they need to be effective in their role. The program was originally developed for CPA firms but can be adapted for other professional service industries.
While everyone can play a role, for partners it should be a given. If you’ve taken care of the training needs, maybe your partners just need an organized plan and a way to stay on track. See how we approach business development planning for individual partners.
If we had a nickel for every time we’ve heard this! Putting the plan in place is only the first step, but without leadership, measurement, accountability, and consistent progress tracking, your chances for successful implementation aren’t great. What gets measured gets done! Let Whetstone’s consultants work with you to establish the right measurement and tracking systems for your firm’s plan and organization, and provide ongoing coaching on building a culture of accountability. We’ll work with you to build the leadership you need to sustain implementation and improve results. Click here to learn more.
For so long, passive business development approaches – networking, referrals, word of mouth - were good enough to keep your growth rates where you wanted them. But in a more competitive market, where large firms are no longer passing up clients, those methods aren’t going to produce enough new business to replace losses much less grow your top line. You need to infuse your marketing mix with some more proactive activities. Fill your pipeline with new sales leads with The Whetstone Group’s proactive approach to telephone lead generation. We’ll help you define the right target market, communicate effective messages, and schedule face-to-face meetings with interested prospects. Learn more about Lead Generation.
With the pending retirement of the baby-boomers, many firms are struggling to identify the next generation of leaders, as well as to ensure the continued profitability of the firm. By developing a plan for growth, and a system for accountability you can identify those up-and-coming leaders in your firm and make sure they have the knowledge and skills to participate in and lead the firm’s growth efforts. You can also begin to coach those individuals on accountability issues—so they are willing to be held accountable and learn to hold others accountable.
It’s tough to get much proactive marketing done when you’re spending all your time on proposals. We see this a lot – and it could be so much easier! Whetstone’s team will work with you to develop effective copy for all your different proposal types, organize it into a system so you don’t have to start from scratch each time, and even train your partners and other professionals on how to more effectively work the proposal process and use the system so you stop wasting valuable time. Click here to learn more.
Did you know there’s a difference between marketing and sales? And that it’s important to implement both with the right balance? Many of the marketing activities mentioned above are great – but you’ll never get an ROI if you don’t transition to sales behaviors and follow up! There is a variety of reasons this transition sometimes doesn’t happen: your people don’t know how to make the transition (click here to learn more about our business development training program); you get busy and don’t do the “before, during and after” phases of implementation (click here to learn how Whetstone can keep you on track); your firm doesn’t have the infrastructure in place to be proactive and follow up after a marketing activity (click here to learn about how telephone lead generation can improve your ROI). Regardless of the reason, it’s important to balance your marketing with sales…and The Whetstone Group can help!
It can be so tough to be the lone marketer in a professional service firm. It’s very common to have as many different bosses as there are partners/principals, and never feel like any of them are satisfied with your hard work. Whetstone’s consultants can serve as an unbiased expert from outside the firm to get your leadership on the same page and establish an approach focused on the same goal and target market. The result? A clear roadmap for your responsibilities and agreement all around as to what you are going to accomplish for the firm. Click here to learn more about how The Whetstone Group can help clarify your contribution and reduce your job anxiety!
And once you get the roadmap in place, you may need some help just to get everything done and fill in where you have resource gaps. Click here to learn how Whetstone can help.
It always sounds like a good idea to have partners or others make follow-up calls after a campaign, but let’s face it. They’re more comfortable serving their clients and often get too busy to actually make the calls. Before you know it, too much time has gone by and you’re spending money on another campaign without ever getting a return on your investment for the last one. The Whetstone Group’s telephone lead generation team can make those calls for you – you just send the list and campaign information, we make the calls and schedule appointments for your professionals to meet with interested prospects. Improve the ROI on all those great campaigns you’re doing by outsourcing the follow-up to us!