As promised in my inaugural blog post here is an insight into the strategy and business plan for Firth Improvement in 2014. Obviously I’m not going to give the game away, but hopefully this will give you more information and background into Firth Improvement and where we’re heading.
Our strategy is simple; to help businesses solve problems. It’s a catchy tag line but it also encapsulates what we do. But let’s break this down a little. We work with companies of 6 or more employees, primarily across Europe and UK. It is our use of Lean, Six Sigma, BPM and Operational Excellence techniques that characterizes our problem solving approach and philosophy.
I believe there is a gap in the market for a company that utilizes industry recognized techniques, in a flexible way, that address the problems that business need to solve. I believe this isn’t unique to Central Europe, but I do believe there is significant potential here and a lack of suitable providers to deliver upon this potential.
Our values are not unusual for a company such as ours, but they are easy to follow and understand:
- Transparency- We are open and honest in our interactions, we are transparent in our pricing, offerings and way in which we communicate.
- Flexibility- Maslow said “if the only tool you have is a hammer, it is tempting to treat everything as if it were a nail”. We’ve got enough experience to know that different problems require different approaches. And as such we are not wedded to any methodology or dogma.
- Humility- I’m not sure it is possible for an entire company to be humble, but what we’re saying here is that in most cases it is the clients that design, develop and implement the solutions, and that we’re here to guide, coach and offer the benefit of our experience.
So what about our plans for 2014? Well with only 5 months of the year left to go we’ve got some ambitious, but realistic, plans to execute.
- Our first goal is to sign up a number of consulting companies to partnerships, and you may have seen on LinkedIn that we’ve already made an agreement with OEE consulting to assist them in their activities. This is a fantastic way to build our brand in the UK and Europe, as well as providing a launch pad for future activities
- Our second goal is linked to the first, by designing and deploying brand building activities. Luxembourg and the wider region is a fantastic place to develop a strong brand and network of clients, with its diverse economy and relatively under developed business improvement environment. In Q4 this year Firth Improvement will be exploring marketing and brand activities that expose us to a wide range of potential clients, as well as raising our profile in the region. Some ideas we’re considering are sponsoring and holding events, organizing a Lean Coffee Mornings to bring together improvement practitioners and also explore more traditional forms of advertising.
- The third goal is to build a business development plan for Luxembourg and the surrounding region. This will look at identifying potential industries and sectors, defining the service offering, and refining the pitch! Two areas that have already piqued our interest are the burgeoning tech start-up sector, which is embodied by Silicon Luxembourg, GenCreo, and the Impactory. And the often-overlooked small business community, which we hope to find ways of fueling small company growth.
- The fourth and final goal is much more specific. We’re currently in preliminary negotiations with a UK based training provider to become a licensee. I hope to be able to tell you more about this opportunity before the year is out.
Of course there is also the unspoken, goal of survival. But I for one prefer to have a more positive outlook on this goal.
In short, I’ve set-up Firth Improvement to help companies and businesses of all sizes maximise their potential. I’ve seen the power of problem solving and am passionate about sharing the extensive tools and techniques of business improvement that brings motivated people together to achieve lofty goals.