A few days ago I had a meeting with George, a friend of mine who owns a small retail business. George recently had an important meeting with a potential large partner to help him grow his business strategically and quickly broaden the range of his product portfolio, along with new distribution channels.
I asked him how the meeting went and if everything had gone to plan. George looked pensive for a minute before he told me his story.
Now, before I carry on, let’s put George’s business into context. George has two employees:
Ron, who is an office based employee trying to keep up with supply chain and orders, and Emma, a remote worker who works both from home and from the road, selling products to regional sites.
George’s story goes like this:
The morning of the meeting, George prepared his presentation, which included a general top line view of his products, his people, his channels, his ideas for growth over the next two years and why he approached the partner in the first place.
George produced a great PowerPoint, all ready to go, but on his way to the meeting he realised that he forgot to include a core slide, the final version of the sales balance sheets! He grabbed his phone, sent a voice message to both of his employees asking them to quickly organise a video conference through Skype for Business. He knew he needed to get information from both Ron and Emma, so he asked them both during the conference to quickly update the slide and add it to his presentation within 30 minutes, leaving 15 minutes for him to review the details.
Ron and Anna finished the slide and uploaded it to SharePoint, which they only recently started using as a team to collaborate from wherever they are working. George was then able to review the final presentation from the train and run to his meeting to make his pitch. It all ended well, George closed the deal and is looking forward to his expansion. And, it is important to note that the detail of the slide updated less than an hour before the meeting was the focus of the longest discussion with the partner. Something he did not even have readily available not an hour before, was there at his fingertips.
What this experience taught George and his staff is that there is certainly a competitive advantage to be had by using modern, easy cloud computing, and in this case, all powered by Microsoft Office 365 tools and features.
It pays to stay connected and equip your team to collaborate, work faster smarter and harder. For more information go to: www.gradwell.com