Here’s the tl;dr version:
Your long-term goals for revenue begin with 3 things:
- A strong plan focused on where you want to see your organization grow.
- A value proposition that combines the value you want to create for your customers and a focus on the people that can use the value and will pay for it.
- Short-term actions that feed into your long-term plan.
The truth is that for many organizations, the short-term and the long-term don’t ever get fully aligned.
We find ourselves spinning our wheels, scrambling to make our quarterly deadlines because we need to be cash flow positive, we have investors to impress, or something else.
What this leads to is a lack of focus on the long-term.
Think about it like this:
Have you ever noticed how severely things get discounted when they aren’t selling well?
That’s typically a situation where not enough time or energy was spent on understanding the plan to reach the goals set for the sale or product.
Maybe it is about value proposition?
It could be about not enough demand?
Likely it is some sort of combination of all of the above.
The crazy thing is that when you haven’t thought things through, taking the action based on alleviating the short-term supply glut seems reasonable.
The flip side is that in the long-term, all of the actions you took to solve the short-term pain are going to cost you money and repute in the long-term.
Discounts destroy your brand for up to 7 years in the minds of your consumers. Don’t believe though. Read the studies in Martin Lindstrom’s book, Buy-ology.
The fact is that every action you take has an impact on your long-term success.
The NFL is struggling right now to keep attendance up and ratings up. This is a point of tremendous short-term pain for them, but the seeds of this discontent were sowed a long time before.
In the United States, we just saw an article by interim-DC chair, Donna Brazille, that talked about the rot, corruption, and neglect at the heart of the DNC that had taking root and been present for years. So when the Democrats were talking about an autopsy needed after the 2016 election and electing a new chair, these weren’t short-term issues. The issue was long-term.
The same goes for success as well. Think about the way that Apple really took off in the mid-2000s. The iPod, iPhone, and iPad weren’t overnight successes that happened in a quarter. The roots of this success were based in decisions Steve Jobs made upon his return to Apple years before.
The thing is that your long-term success is always started by the decisions you make today.
You need short-term success, sure.
But you need to make sure that you don’t allow your short-term success or needs destroy your long-term potential as well.