‘Results Driven Change’ Author Made A Lasting Impression; The Lessons Apply Directly To Automatic Merchandising

The National Automatic Merchandising Association (NAMA) OneShow has been over for almost two months, but Im still absorbing the lessons from the results driven strategy seminar, which was the expos best attended session. As an attendee, I was fortunate enough to receive the book, Driven; Business Strategy, Human Actions, and The Creation of Wealth, which I recently completed.The books main author, Dr. Mark Frigo, presented the 90-minute NAMA seminar, along with the chairman of a bakery company who described how Frigos tenets worked for his company. I was surprised that so many vending operators turned out for such a challenging topic. The turnout speaks well for our industrys future.Frigo is director of the Center for Strategy, Execution and Valuation at the Strategic Risk Management Lab at Kellstadt Graduate School of Business at DePaul University in Chicago.His 270-page book is designed as a guide to develop and evaluate strategy for just about any size business.His method is based on five tenets: 1) target changing customer needs, 2) target the right customers, 3) change and innovate your offerings, 4) brand your offerings, and 5) use the right incentives and measure.The book struck me as specifically helpful to an industry such as automatic merchandising, which faces a changing consumer and is undergoing technology-driven change.Frigos exercises direct business owners to identify key assets, such as employees, customers, suppliers and partner organizations. He directs them to recognize forces of change such as regulatory change, demographic and cultural shifts, and scientific and technological breakthroughs.A lot of attention is also given to the metrics needed to measure progress.The book will help an owner decide what technologies to invest in and when. Frigo notes that understanding whats important to a customer can help determine if a new technology will help the business reach its goals.Is the customer willing to pay a higher price for consistent price and value in a companys offerings?Do the employees understand the role they play in helping the company reach its goals?Does the companys business plan provide a tangible road map to its goals?These are the sorts of questions businesses today face.One takeaway is that business resources exist and business owners need to use them.By hosting an expert like Dr. Frigo, NAMA is doing its part to make this happen.