“Only 8% of leaders are good at both strategy and execution, which means you must discover the sweet spot of knowing yourself, your competitors and your terrain. The very best win with ‘ideas’ and are obsessed with their front-line customer relationships.”
That was one of the key messages conveyed by Elevation Forum founder and Mack Elevation leader Dan Mack at the most recent Elevation Form held in Scottsdale, Ariz., on Friday.
The pre-NACDS Annual Meeting forum started with a thought-provoking discussion on how CPG sales and marketing organizations become “one” as they co-develop solutions with their retail partners. “Research shows when sales and marketing teams are in-sync, growth is impacted by three-fold,” Mack said. “That is a game-changing idea; and manufacturers must build capabilities and culture with this mindset.”
The featured keynote speaker was CVS Health’s SVP front store business and loyalty, and chief merchant, Judy Sansone. Sansone shared a blueprint for building a deeper, valuable partnership with the drug chain retailer. The CVS Health blueprint for success includes embracing advanced personalization, store clustering, speed to market and localized store thinking — it’s not a one-size-fits-all approach. CVS Health will continue to transform their stores, like its newest store unveiled in New York City on Wednesday, with the goal of fostering an enhanced customer experience and including expanded beauty selections, health-focused products and new healthier foods.
According to Sansone, the best supplier partners that help reach these goals create strong relationships with CVS Health by unleashing the power of their ExtraCare loyalty and insights engine. A digitally engaged ExtraCare member drives 3.6 times greater margins for the company vs. non-engaged customers.
In the afternoon, the Forum Elevation discussion challenged the group with the question: “Could You Be Wrong?” “Our confidence that we are right has grown to dangerous proportions,” Mack said. “And we rarely allow others to challenge or correct us. This result hinders growth.” Successful teams are often prisoners of their past achievements; closing the door on new ideas due to past failures. The best companies embrace dissenting voices and uncertainty, while creating a courageous culture where problems are candidly confronted, resulting in a stronger innovation process, industry impact and high level customer engagement.”