When we talk about business development, what exactly do we mean?
Business development refers to the multidisciplinary management for defining products and services, aimed at strengthening its marketing. Definition of new opportunities, creation of needs, and design of an alliance strategy.
In this sense, the person responsible for business development defines how the business should evolve so as not to stagnate, to continue growing.
It is very common to confuse business development with marketing or sales. Well, it is important to know that, although there must be a close synergy between them, they are totally differentiated areas, where each one has its own functions. Let’s say that business development goes ahead of the rest of the areas defining the strategies for the progress of the business, taking advantage of the opportunities in the environment or creating them, as well as establishing the necessary synergies with external entities.
What does a business development department do?
Identify and seize opportunities
It must identify and take advantage of the opportunities offered by the environment, such as markets with high potential that have not yet been exploited, whether it is the extension to new geographical areas or the development of new products and/or services. In addition, it must have the ability to create opportunities that lead to business growth, anticipating market movements.
Create opportunities if there aren’t any
Business development must have the ability to create opportunities that lead to business growth, even anticipating market movements. Go one step further.
For business growth, it is necessary to establish strategic alliances with external entities, either to expand to new geographical areas, development of new products and/or services, new suppliers to reinforce the current value chain of the business, development of new processes, etc. Synergies with third parties are a key element in the evolution of any business.
The business development department must go hand in hand with innovation, both in technology and in business processes. This is of great relevance today, due to the constant and rapid evolution of technology and society. Staying static in the face of these changes is allowing oneself to be brought down in the market war that companies are subjected to today.
Ask yourself the questions that no one else asks
Business development must go beyond reality, custom, routine. You must always investigate how to do things differently, how to improve current processes. Thinking that everything can be improved and that no procedure is written in stone.
Define the strategy
As always, you cannot miss the strategy. Through strategy, business development defines how the business will evolve, always taking into account the corporate objectives, as well as the mission and vision of the company. Without a strategy, it is practically impossible to obtain results, since actions will only be carried out motivated by improvisation without pursuing a common goal.
It is vital that the activities carried out by this department are framed in a work methodology and a business development plan with well-defined objectives, aligned with the organizational objectives and the global strategy of the company, thus avoiding the improvisation that may entail errors that harm the company.
In today’s changing market, it is essential to have a business development department, which is 100% focused on seeking opportunities for evolution and defining strategies to adapt to changes quickly and even anticipate them. In this way, the company advances at the speed of the markets.
If your company has not considered including business development as part of its core functions and does not have the necessary professional muscle to do so with the current staff, it is time to look for experts on the subject, professionals with the knowledge and the experience necessary to visualize and take advantage of the opportunities that will make your business grow. Today, missing an opportunity can translate into failure for a company, without going back.
The company must be prepared for its evolution, in this sense knowing how to manage change is necessary. Business development and change management are two sides of the same coin.