Dr Joern Meissner

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Meissner Research Group — Operations Strategy and Pricing Management Blog

The Key to Staying on Top: Reevaluation

May 20th, 2010 by Joern Meissner

In a market where timing is everything and prices are constantly shifting, one of the main (and obvious) priorities that executives and managers tend to miss is constant reevaluation. With aggressive competitors ready to move in on your customers, a successful company needs to be constantly aware of what is going on in their markets, what they customers want, and where their prices should be. It is not enough to simply know this information once a month or even once a week; in this technologically-reinforced fast -paced world, it is imperative that executives reevaluate their decisions constantly.

The first step in the reevaluation process to realize that you, as the executive or manager, have two valuable resources at your disposal: your employees and your computers. The second step is to trust that each can do their job.

Your computers can be set up, with even the most basic software, to run databases that can process large amount of information, from your current prices, to your prices in certain months, to your competitors’ prices. Having this information is vital, as it will tell you whether your prices are working or failing you at any given point.

A case in point here is simple: if last year’s data tells you that more people will need swimming suits in the summer and spring, push the price up in those seasons. While this may seem overly simplistic, information like this won’t make any difference if your company miss this because the information isn’t always available and isn’t accessible every day. If your competitor suddenly changes prices, you simply can’t wait three months to realize it – and another three months to change your pricing policies to try to take back some of your customers.

The second part of this process is also fairly simple: empower your employees to use these information databases to implement informed decisions. If your employee realizes that your two major competitors have suddenly dropped their prices for a similar product to yours and that you’re going to lose any chance at a profit this quarter because of it, then enable your employees to fix that problem for you. Sure, have then inform you of the problem and the solution immediately, as it happens, but in this day of instant communication with anyone, they shouldn’t have to wait every time something changes – because something will change every day.

This is the central crux of this idea: stay on top by staying informed. Put of all your skills to use by making sure that your company is running as well as it can by keeping informed and by using this constant stream of information to make important decisions on your basic pricing policies, every day.

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