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Strategic Planning for Distributors: Execution Isn’t Everything—It’s the Only Thing!

Tom O'Connor

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Strategic Planning for Distributors: Execution Isn’t Everything—It’s the Only Thing! provides you with 11 proven best-practice strategy steps to apply as you run your business in a rapidly changing competitive environment. The book, by Tom O'Connor, draws on more than two decades of wholesale distribution research with strategy execution secrets of successful wholesaler-distributors. You will learn how to

  • execute specific action plans to produce sustainable, profitable results
  • create effective leadership team roles related to strategy execution
  • balance your company's “inside-out” thinking with “outside-in” thinking from channel partners
  • link strategy to the right performance measurement and reward system
  • ensure that all employees in your organization are committed to improving their individual performance and achieving your company’s overall business strategy.

Strategic Planning for Distributors, the first strategy book written specifically for wholesaler-distributors, is here to help you overcome whatever strategic planning challenges you face. You will learn how to execute your business strategy successfully for profitable, long-term growth. Remember: "Execution isn't everything. It's the only thing!"

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What Readers Have to Say

"In this book, Tom O'Connor takes strategic planning from the bookshelf to the bank! Leaving no stone unturned, he masterfully fills in the gaps left by the typical strategic planning process. He points out that execution is a team sport that must involve everyone in the company from the top executives down to the street level. Most importantly, Tom provides the tools, along with guidance about how to use them, which make execution likely and the best possible outcome a certainty."
— John S. Cain, President, Wiseway Supply
"Tom O'Connor's book, Strategic Planning for Distributors, is one of those rare guide books that can help companies at all levels. For the company that has somehow managed to stay in business without a formal strategic planning process, this book provides an excellent road map on how to implement strategic planning in your business. For the company that has a strategic plan already in place, this book provides new tricks and best practices that can help move the company forward."
— Bill Glockner, President/CEO, Hirsch Pipe & Supply Co., Inc.
"Strategic Planning for Distributors is richly appended with step-by-step examples of distributors who have made a commitment to focus their business on their strategic goals. The book will show you how, with buy-in from your associates, you can make the same journey as other distributors. It will give you the inspiration and guidance to get there."
— Bill Elliott, President, Elliott Electric Supply

Extended Description

In today’s competitive business environment, strategic planning can no longer be pushed to the sidelines. Creating and executing a successful business strategy is every wholesale distribution leader’s number-one job, no matter the business size or line of trade. The challenge for many distributors is how to translate and apply their general knowledge of strategic planning to the specific challenges they face in their business. 

According to Author Tom O’Connor, most wholesaler-distributors fail to achieve sustainable, profitable growth. Many distributors are able to achieve temporary spurts of growth, but can not sustain that growth over 10 consecutive years. Only a small number of distribution companies succeed in creating shareholder value over long periods of time. Does your current strategic-planning process result in continual increases in market share and sustainable profitability? If not, then you want to read this book.

O'Connor takes you through 11 best-practice strategy steps and discusses how successful business strategies can produce increases in market share and sustainable profitability. He provides proven breakthrough strategies, tools, and guidance, along with plenty of real-world distributor examples to help you improve organizational performance and gain competitive advantage. Each chapter describes a best-practice strategy step that frames the wholesale distribution strategy pyramid.

About the Author

Tom O'Connor

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Tom founded Farmington Consulting Group in 1982 and is well known throughout the wholesale distribution industry as a strategy consultant, writer, and speaker. He is a consultant at heart and is energized by taking wholesale distribution cross-functional strategy teams through the 11 strategy steps described in this book.

NAW Institute LogoWhy NAW Institute Publications Are Different

NAW Institute for Distribution Excellence conducts research into strategic management issues affecting the wholesale distribution industry. Our research is conducted with best practice wholesaler-distributors, and we publish leading-edge research studies with practical application for wholesale distribution firms of all sizes and across all lines of trade.

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