Re-Imagining The Construction & Manufacturing Industries
Not long after the 2008 recession, companies in the construction industry were forced to realize that the old business environment was not likely to return quickly. The new business landscape was so filled with uncertainty that they felt like “deer in headlights.”
For manufacturers, particularly those closely related to construction, the recession was equally challenging. Their old markets dried up and new ones were still emerging. Since our job is to help clients “see, feel and think” in new ways, we advised them that they had to re-imagine their business and grow them in innovative ways. But in this industry, that was not a skill set they were comfortable using. They understood the old rules of growing a business but were stymied when it came to re-inventing a new one. However, opportunities were indeed emerging. As consultants, we realized that companies just had to pause for a moment and “see, feel and think” about their businesses in new ways.
Some of our client stories illustrate how to see new opportunities with fresh eyes, then make new ideas come to life, and quickly:
- Laclede Chain―Laclede Chain is a traction business company that was expanding its scope of services with a new manufacturing plant in the U.S. We helped management identify ways to leverage these new opportunities, an approach to revamp their business model, and methods for using Blue Ocean Strategies® to expand into new market space.
- Elkay Industries―Elkay is a fourth generation family firm in the plumbing supply business, as well as in kitchen cabinets and water fountains. We were engaged to help launch their water hydration stations. They had an entirely new product for an emerging market, but didn’t know it. They recognized that their old solutions (water fountains) were not relevant without new construction. Their new products (hydration stations) were highly valuable to an entirely new market space: sustainability directors. But they were not even sure who those new sustainability directors were or how to market to them. Once we helped them see their market in new ways, they hired a new sales team and were off in new directions.
- Brandt Engineering―This is a Texas engineering firm seeking to reinvent itself for growth. We helped them rethink their growth strategy and positioned them for healthy expansion.
- Benjamin Obdyke―A manufacturer of patented roofing and house wrap products, Benjamin Obdyke was a wonderful company that had to reinvent itself for changing times. Using Blue Ocean Strategy methods, we helped them expand in innovative ways into markets which they had previously ignored: new geographies, new distribution channels and a new category of stucco remediation among the new emergent markets.
- EAC/Integrated Power Solutions―A manufacturer of batteries and one of our first Blue Ocean Strategy clients, EAC/Integrated Power Solutions was a 20 years old company. Yet, they had to invigorate the company after three years of stalled growth. After we took them exploring, they realized their clients really wanted “lighter, longer, stronger power solutions,” not batteries. Re-positioned, they became a successful acquisition for a much larger power production company.
- DKA Transportation Engineering―A multi-specialty company in the transportation engineering industry, DKA was struggling with culture issues. Their cultural issues required a systematic approach suitable for the Organizational Cultural Assessment Instrument and our ChangeMap™ process. Once they visualizes how to change their culture, they could move forward in innovative ways.
- GCC Cement Mexico and U.S.―GCC is a well-established multi-national cement company. We helped them undergo a cultural transformation that will better position the company for growth.
What is always so important to realize is that leaders in business really do “know what they know.” And they “know what they don’t know”— how to fly a plane, for instance. But they are stumped by how much they “don’t know they don’t know”—all those things taking place around them that they are unable to see because their mind map sorts reality, discarding experiences that don’t fit.
At SAMC, our consulting services make it our job to help construction businesses re-imagine their organization, re-invent what they are doing and re-think old ideas in new ways.
Perhaps we can be of help to your business. Contact us.