Most marketers and business developers have a knack for planning. From proposal deadlines and branding launches to industry networking and client meetings, it’s good practice to think about what lies ahead and what it will take to accomplish goals.
Henry David Thoreau once said, “Never look back unless you are planning to go that way.” Another great planning quote comes from Alan Lakein: “Planning is bringing the future into the present so that you can do something about it now.”
You get it. Planning today is important for tomorrow’s success. It’s something I think about often, not only as a business owner but as the SMPS Foundation president.
The SMPS Foundation exists to study industry, societal, and technology trends that expand business-generating activities of professional services firms. We explore and recommend strategies and solutions to achieve the Society’s vision of Business Transformed Through Marketing Leadership. For the past three years, I’ve had the honor to serve as a trustee, along with my peers, to help put some of these strategies in motion.
In July, we had a planning meeting before Amplify A|E|C in Atlanta and engaged in crucial conversations to begin identifying challenges facing SMPS members, their firms, and the design and construction industry. During the summer, our new report Theory Into Practice: The Neuropsychology of Influence and Decision-Making also became available. In this research report, JonRobert Tartaglione with Influence 51 highlights how two firms are applying proven decision-making skills as part of their marketing programs. We encourage you to download the publication, which is complimentary to SMPS members, to study the insights and think about how your firm could apply them effectively.
In partnership with TOKY, a brand strategy firm, we unveiled Foundation-sponsored research, Positioning & Differentiation in A/E/C Marketing, at Amplify A|E|C as well. The report is being finalized for publication in the near future and will be a useful tool to help members improve branding strategies.
The Foundation is also continuing to refine the Owner’s Survey, which we envision to be an industry-leading annual report that helps us identify buying trends among clients so our members can build even stronger client relationships and consistently win more work.
We’re also listening to the Society’s Strategic Plan results and hearing compelling topics that could frame future research projects. These are just glimmers of ideas today, and we know there will be much work ahead to prioritize topics and embark on relevant research.
So, what does all this mean for you and your firm? Personalize the SMPS Foundation’s mission and go from there. What are your current challenges, and what would you like to know to help you unlock your potential? As you plan for 2023 and beyond, what solutions would make a difference for your firm? As you look at the design and construction industry in the next five years, what trends will be the most important to harness for improved productivity and profitability? What would make your profession easier, better, or more impactful?
These are just a few questions to ask yourself to get started. And when you’re ready to act, connect with the foundation trustees to let us know your thoughts and ideas. We trustees are looking at the future to frame our research efforts today.
Article written by SMPS Foundation President Barbara Shuck, FSMPS, CPSM. Barbara can be reached at email@example.com.