The Big Picture (4 of 7)Posted: October 2, 2017
Our newest book, Competitive Intelligence Rescue – Getting It Right, has several cases that highlight issues in creating or adding a new competitive intelligence unit. In our experience, there are usually 7 major elements involved in either process:
- financial and personnel
- internal marketing
- customers and their needs, and
- products and feedback.
To help you see the big picture, I will deal briefly with each issue over time. I have already discussed the financial and personnel issues, guidelines and training. One of the cases in Competitive Intelligence Rescue – Getting It Right highlights issues in marketing CI to employees and officers. Here are a couple of high-level issues:
- Internal marketing of CI is critical to the development of a top CI program that supports critical decisions and has, and maintains, the support of the entire organization. Support means that the CI program has both needed time and funding on a continuing basis.
- This requires that management provide access to all employees, particularly to senior management and the sales force, as a part of its, hopefully, enthusiastic support.
- Marketing involves educating all employees not just internal customers, about CI and its role in decision-making at the organization. This will foster the development of cooperation from customer-facing employees, potentially a great source off raw data, and a continuing by-in by management. It also can help to block management requests that, unknowingly, might force CI data collectors to cross ethical or even legal lines.
- Internal marketing also makes it easier to develop internal networks, something I will cover later. It encourages the generation of important bits of data from employees who “never knew that anyone was interested in that”.
- Finally, it serves to alert all employees and officers to the existence of CI efforts being used against them, making defensive efforts easier to start and maintain.
For thoughts on related issues, check out my past blogs, including these two: