Thursday, 29 November 2007

Apathetic R&D? - Kills long term return on brand investment?

Brand Killer Robots reveal::
"Quality up, quantity up, revenue up, costs down, staff retension factor good, profit up, customer satisfaction up? "So why the hell do you need me to help you introduce monster change inside your organisation?" "Why the hell do you want to rock the boat, by introducing an agent provocateur into the midst?" "Surely you want everything to run on smoothly, at least until to pick up that fat cheque the board have promised you?".

Sometimes brand leadership defies all kinds of logic. In fact, brand leadership isn't only about logic. Its also about love and intuition. About sense, nerve and resolve in the face of relentless success or failure. Its about focusing on the ball and only the ball - long enough to make the difference.

We have seen leaders who were doomed to failure when assessed at one level become some of the successful business people on earth.

But alas for many leaders, they are doomed to prevail over a gradually declining brand or at best helping to shore up a brand that should have been dead along time ago. Why is it that so many of todays top companies could be classified in this way? Why are so many of them relying on the quick witted, stealthy mind of their overpaid Financial Director?

Its for the same reason that this brand leader wanted to appoint an agent provocateur inside a seemingly perfect organisation. Management and staff had become complacent. Whilst they trod the boards and maintained those key indicators, they became drunk on success and began to lose focus on the most important thing of all - "developing the brand". In the early days of most company's there is a furious scramble of passion and inginuity at the start, which eventually culminates in the birth of a brand. In the intermediate stages the founders shape, destill and embellish the brand in their own image. Once the brand "baby" has grown beyond the founders (parent) wildest imaginations, they begin to lose interest in a key area of focus (R&D), necessary for the brand to continue to grow. At which point there is a disconnection between the founders and the brand.

That's why a seemingly healthy brand purchase can turn out to be a turkey in a couple years time. But by then the original owners will be long gone with your money!

When the founders decide they don't want to play anymore - you've gotta at least ask them why?

That's why this brand leader wanted to hire an Agent Provocateur. He wanted to shake the tree of success and expose the lazy, rotten, apathetic apples.

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