Scaling validated business models inside or outside the organisation according to given objectives is key in the go-to-market phase. We describe in this article typical activities and the organisational options you can consider.
After a successful completion of a Business Design project with 1-X iterations, the sponsor of a project may have decided to launch the results on the market. If you have done a good job so far, the biggest uncertainties should have been eliminated. From now on, it is about 100% execution - as efficient as possible. As a preparation, there are some more steps needed to turn the results of a Business Design project into something you can sell with existing or newly established structures.
Since a Go-to-Market process depends heavily on the type of innovation, we just list here very typical activities:
Hand-over to Product Development Process (PDP)
Setup a suitable organisational setup
Setup of final production / engineering / implementation
Preparation of marketing materials
Preparation of sales channels / regions
Training of sales staff etc.
The execution of these tasks require a suitable organizational setup. We usually consider the following organisational options to launch a new business:
Hand-over to existing division: For ideas, which are "just" an extension of today's product portfolio, it seems obvious that these ideas should be marketed within an existing business division. Companies have already the capacity to eventually build and sell the new offerings and maintain the customer relationships. Nothing fancy.
Setup of new business division: In case of new business opportunities, let's say, a new service concept that allows a company to serve totally new customers, one of our preferred option is to simply establish a new division within the company. This is specifically reasonable, when business opportunities still benefit from the company's brand, supply chain, experts etc.
Spin-off as new legal entity: Ideas with a radical twist, far away from a company today's business and fast-scaling approach, won't survive in a legacy culture with traditional decision-making processes. An independent organisation as a startup might be a good solution. This also allows us also to approach professional investors (e.g. Business Angels, VCs, Funds) to provide substantial financial means to fuel scaling phase.
Partnering: If a new business requires extensive knowledge, resources or people beyond a company's scope, partnering with other players on the market is an option worth considering. One of the most challenging aspects of setting up a partnership in this context is the alignment of goals between the partners. Be honest and clear in your communication.
Joint venture: A joint venture is a special type of partnering model, in which two or more companies establish a new legal entity with a shared purpose and jointly owned by these companies. This option is valid, if the entrepreneurial responsibility is better shared among different players and the access to resources of these companies is critical for success.
We use the following criteria to evaluate and determine, which option is most suitable for a certain idea and its context:
Idea's distance to today's core business
Importance to access internal resources and customers
Lack of relevant sales knowledge & skills
Lack of relevant technological knowledge & skills
Lack of people and key resources
Cultural distance to legacy organisation
Freedom to decide and operate in an entrepreneurial mode
Access to (external) venture capital and other financial sources
Access to labour market to attract and hire new talents
Flexibility to incentivise employees
Necessity to onboard new partners
Financial planning (traditional vs. investor's view)