One of the most critical elements in making a business decision is having the facts. Put aside the emotional aspect of starting, buying, expanding, or selling a business. Consider the logical information that’s available; the business side of the deal.
A recent project involved a competitive market analysis for a client that wanted to expand a high margin portion of its business to a different market segment. The investment involved millions of dollars, so it made sense to spend a couple thousand to learn if it was a feasible project and whether there was a significant enough volume to warrant the expansion.
Yes, this type of research takes time. If it’s an emotional decision, the time factor can put undue pressure on getting the facts. As we have discovered in conducting numerous market research studies, the path to a decisive outcome often takes many diverse turns. One bit of information may indicate the choice is quite clear, while the next piece of data spins the decision in the opposite direction. It requires all the facts to provide a clear picture, and that takes time.
In the recent effort, what looked like relevant information turned out to be at least two years old. While it may still be pertinent, further research is required from additional sources to verify the validity of the information. Some sources are more reliable than others, so as professionals, we are required to double check and, at times, triple check the resource to determine the accuracy of the data.
As you should assume, the world of business can change quite rapidly. For instance, we determined that a major international company had a subsidiary that looked promising for the client’s expansion project. Digging deeper, we learned the subsidiary had been sold to a group of private investors and re-branded under a totally separate corporate umbrella. Despite the potential for change, the time eventually arrives when a decision needs to be made.
Get the facts, and you have a higher percentage chance at success. Then, when you’re ready to market your new strategy, you can bring the emotion back into the equation and move forward.