6 tips to keep your Competitive Intelligence system healthy
In INNGUMA we like to say that Competitive Intelligence is like a flower or a bonsai: it can give us many joys but it is delicate and requires constant care. Launching Competitive Intelligence activity and leaving it to its fate, without proper supervision and review, leads to failure inevitably. Therefore, in this article we describe some tasks (some specific and other periodicals) to be performed for the Competitive Intelligence system to work properly so we can benefit from the advantages it offers.
The 6 tasks to be performed are:
- Review your KITs: It is an issue that we keep insisting, but a correct definition of Key Intelligence Topics is essential for the system to succeed. KITs should reflect the areas where the captured information can provide most benefits and should be aligned with the company strategy. Sometimes we find situations where, wanting to overreach too many aspects, the most critical are obviated.
- Listen to the "recipients" of information: Sometimes the shortest way to detect an error or improve something is very simple: asking. Talking to the receivers (the CI should help them making better decisions) can give us other views about the design of the activity and the results there are being.
- Monitors the indicators: As mentioned in a previous post, monitoring of indicators is essential to check the health of the system and detect possible deviations. They must be adequate to the project scope and there must be a responsible for monitoring.
- Deliberate about decision making: What kinds of decisions are made in your organization? What opportunities or threats may be? Who makes the decisions of each type? What decisions have been made lately, and what has been the role of information in them? These type of questions can help you know why the CI is not proving to be the great input of information that you expected and what you have to do to be closer to the real needs of your environment.
- Send newsletters: Newsletters are a great way of getting information to "passive" or "reactive" users, as well as a good way to collect the most interesting the CI is giving us. There must be a fixed periodicity for these newsletters and respect it whenever possible.
- Talk to analysts: CI analysts are the ones who know what and how much information they are receiving. They should feel part of the system and see their work recognized to maintain high motivation. The results of the system depend on their work, so they should also be available to perform the assigned functions. If you take care of your analysts, you will have professionals who can contribute their knowledge in many aspects and situations.