The 4D Process
Discuss --> Define --> Dedicate --> Deliver
All great businesses have great processes. Interacting with customers, building great products, developing short and long term plans, hiring the best talent - becoming a successful organization is dependent on having well thought-out and efficient processes and procedures.
At Pfenning Group, we help business owners and executives build great process into their organizations to become truly world-class. We do this by incorporating our own unique process into the mix, which we call 4D. It is a deceptively simple, yet extraordinarily effective, means of engaging with our clients to identify potential opportunities and managing the process of implementing ideal business solutions.
We typically start our engagements with a Business Analysis to uncover pertinent and imminent opportunities with a high return-on-investment, followed by a plan to address those opportunities in the most economical way possible. We then get buy-in from all stakeholders involved in the process and, finally, implement the plan with the support of our client's team. This accounts for all four of the "D's" in the 4D process, which is further explained below.
the problem or opportunity
The first step in addressing any complex problem (synonymous with "opportunity") worth solving involves dialogue. This includes key decision makers, those responsible for executing the solution and key advisors to decision makers.
We will bring you into the first step of our process with an initial consultation to discuss your particular goals, problems and opportunities. We want to be sure we feel comfortable that your circumstances line up with our expertise and allow you to become comfortable with us, personally, and our approach.
If we ultimately decide to work together, we will model 4D as we utilize it ourselves throughout our engagement with you. Then we will ask you to start incorporating this deceptively simple system into your business and experience the power of good habit.
Once you and your team have discussed the problem and acknowledge it is significant enough to address, the next step in the process is usually the most critical. Yet it is frequently overlooked and most often a "band-aid" solution is applied at the expense of systematically eliminating the problem.
Most business problems result from a systemic lack of process. That is, these problems usually repeat themselves in a myriad of forms until a repeatable, well-understood and well-executed process is applied.
Don't forget that a "problem" is synonymous with an "opportunity." Your opportunities are just future problems in training and your problems are simply veiled opportunities to get better.
Every sustainable opportunity will eventually become a problem unless dealt with systematically.
Our philosophy at Pfenning Group is that 98.8793%+ of all business problems will be repeated more than once in an organization's lifecycle. It is wise to anticipate potential problems and develop processes that will turn the problem into nothing more than raw goods for a finished product.
to the process
Once the process has been defined in detail and is ready for deployment, there is another step --- the absence of which is the biggest reason for process breakdown in its formative stages.
Think about the last time you confidently and enthusiastically presented your new time-saving, profit yielding and oh-so-simple process improvement to your team?
Unfortunately, 9 times out of 10, you don't get exactly the enthusiastic reception you were expecting. Your team has objections --- many of them very legitimate --- and you start to wonder whether this will work as well as you expected it to.
Now STOP. We said the 4D model is simple, not easy. We'll give you the skills to address and ultimately AVOID objections, but it involves DEDICATION on your part, both to our processes and your own. It will also involve dedication by your entire team, preferably through their own free will and desire.
Impossible you say? We beg to differ.
Ultimately, what good is any process if it doesn't deliver results in the end?
This is actually where our discussion will begin. By first understanding what end goal(s) you have for your business --- revenue growth, consistent quality, brand differentiation, higher margins, improved employee retention, market share gains, salability, etc. --- we can work backwards to develop the system through which those goals will be achieved, as well as the processes inside of that system that will turn your vision into a reality.
The essence of our process is that it's easily understood, can be applied universally to almost any problem and allows for refinement at any time during or after development as new information is gathered.