In the words of a layman, business development can be summarized as the activities, initiatives and ideas that aid in making a business better. Steven Rindner mentions that this would include an increase in the revenue of an organization, growth in terms of business expansion, as well as an increase in profitability by building strategic partnerships and making strategic business decisions. Successful business development would impact every department within a company, including sales, marketing, manufacturing, human resources, accounting, finance, product development, and even vendor management.
Business development activities extend across different departments, and involve the aspects of partnerships, cost-savings, negotiations and networking. According to Steven Rindner , all of the varying activities and departments of a firm are usually driven by and aligned with the business development goals. Business development largely involves the processes that aids in the creation of long-term value for an organization from customers, markets, and relationships. At its very core, this sphere deals with figuring out how the interactions of these three forces combine to create opportunities for growth.
There are multiple aspects that highlight the importance of business development in modern-day organizations as per Steven Rindner. Here are some of them:
- The business development process is vital for any organization that needs to sell its products or services. By ignoring this process or not properly implementing a form of business development structure, a company can fall short of new leads or clients.
- A focus on the business development process allows the company management to put more focus on their sales pipeline. It encourages them to dwell on vital points, such as their market prospects, their scope for development, and the steps to be taken to push them closer to a sale.
- While putting a focus on the product or service delivered by a company is important, they should not lose sight of the needs of the customers while paying heed to their output. Working hard on the business development process allows companies to fully understand what a customer is looking for, rather than simply pushing the product.
- Consistent practice of business development would imply that a company is constantly nurturing, attracting, managing and developing new prospects. It helps a business to maintain sight of its long term objectives, while also focusing on current development opportunities.
To do their job competently, a business developer must have a good idea about the current state of the company in terms of SWOT analysis, as well as its overall industry and growth projections. They should also be well acquainted with competitor developments, primary sources of sales of current business and dependencies, customer profiles, new and unexplored market opportunities, and also the major cost areas and the possible options for cost-savings. A business developer can be an entrepreneur or some designated employee. Their job role would largely entail making plans for strategic business change in order to add value to its operations and contribute towards business development.