5 things that characterise a ‘best in class’ setup
The key to growth lies in having a lean distribution platform with the right dedicated partners. Our experience shows that there are 5 specific elements which characterise the distribution setup of the most successful brands.
Are you on the threshold of entering new markets? Or are you preoccupied with getting more out of the market you are already present in? Then there is a lot to gain by looking at some of the things that other, successful Nordic brands do really well.
When we help companies to expand or develop regions such as Japan, Australia, Russia, Africa, Asia, India, the Middle East, South America and Eastern Europe, we often have particular focus on 5 elements, as we know from experience that this is where the key to success and acceleration is found:
5 things that characterise a ‘best in class’ setup
The right partners
Are you working with the right partners? Do your partners have the financial strength, the right organisational set-up and the right experience and knowledge of how to perform in precisely this market? Because this is simply a precondition for being able to develop the market. The product may be unique, proven and perform well in the domestic market, but none of this will help if the partner does not perform or have the strength needed to execute.
Are you aligned with the way things work in professional work cultures around the world? If you are not used to operating outside of Europe, you can quickly get into trouble: How formal is the tone? How is work structured? Do you have senior employees with experience of this particular region? Which cooperation models are most often used? This may vary from region to region. You can introduce all the KPIs in the world and also achieve much – but you will accelerate faster if your plans are based in and on the culture of the market in question.
Strong commercial plan
It is important to have a clear direction to aim for internally in the company. When you develop a strong commercial sales and marketing plan, you can benefit from input from the distributor regarding obstacles and opportunities in the market. The course you set must be completely clear – not only for you, but also for the distributor, so that you have the same focus on growing the business on all fronts. A strong commercial plan is a must for developing a region.
Focus on KPIs and performance
Make it completely clear to the partner which indicators you use to measure cooperation, e.g. revenue per quarter and per month, marketing activities held by quarter, product launches held per quarter. Of course, you must prepare an annual commercial plan, but in our experience, if you want to maximise the cooperation with the individual distributor or partner, you need to implement quarterly bonus targets. This gives sharper focus and attention from both sides.
It is important to implement a structured way of working in cooperation with the partners, so that you are constantly in-line with market developments. For example, create the weekly telco status meeting with a fixed agenda, focus on KPIs, budget goals, sales team status and other daily challenges. These weekly status meetings will ensure the distributor maintains the proper focus. We recommend holding a quarterly F2F meeting with the distributor and reviewing the commercial plan, status for the previous quarter, updated sales and marketing activities for the next 12 weeks, etc.
Can we help you?
ORDO specialises in helping Nordic companies enter global markets and regions in Japan, Australia, Russia, Africa, Asia, India, the Middle East, South America and Eastern Europe. Our consultancy is based on up-to-date experience in the field and tried and tested best practices. We can draw on our large global network to find just the right partner, and we can help trim your distribution platform, motivate your partners and increase your sales.
Niels displayed a very high level of energy and can-do attitude when we worked together at Bang & Olufsen. He is particularly skilled at working with people from different parts of the world and with different cultural backgrounds.
Former: CEO, Bang & Olufsen A/S
Present: Chairman of the board: Vækstfonden, Danish AM Hub, Lakrids by Bülow and Board Members in other danish companies.
Niels is a strong and very dynamic commercial leader, with a solid experience and an outstanding trackrecord achieving results. He has outstanding implementation skills as he has the ability to quickly grasp the specifics of a new industry and to work deligently and effectively accellerate performance of his teams.
Anders Schnettler Kristensen
Former: CSO, WS Audiology A/S
Niels has an amazing ability to execute the strategy and achieve the goals. Always with a positive attitude and with an incredible amount of energy. Niels is one of the best sales executives I have worked with and he has an incredible ability to turn critical situations into a success story. Niels create a lot of positive energy and he never gives up.
Former: EVP & COO, Bang & Olufsen A/S
Present: CEO at Precise Biometrics
I would thoroughly recommend Niels Møller Nielsen as a partner to help find solutions to your business needs. He has a very warm and empathetic personal style and is always seeking to manage his interpersonal relationships with sincerity and integrity. Niels is a strong leader who exudes authority, passion and seeks to to build high class engagement with his team, clients and partners.
He is entirely focussed on flawless execution – a hallmark of his career has been a strong track record of delivering results across major industries with blue chip companies. At the same time he sees the big picture and he works to build a bigger, better and brighter future in the interests of all stakeholders.
Former: President Europe, Kelloggs
Present: Managing Director at Twaddell Management Ltd.
I worked closely with Niels in our period together in Eurasia/Russia and have stayed in touch with him since then. Niels is a great leader, with a strong eye for talent and how to develop and stretch them. He has strengths in building solid, trusted relationships, both externally with partners and internally. He puts a high bar for himself and his team, and achieved strong results in a fast-changing environment. I truly enjoyed working with Niels. He is a team-player, with a great sense of humour, well-grounded and balances his work-life balance well.
I can highly recommend Niels for his new company, Ordo Recruitment.
Former: SVP, Nokia Europe
Present: EVP, EMEA Market Groups, The LEGO Group