Business development can be summarized as the activities, initiatives, and ideas that helps a company to progress and get better. Steven Rindner mentions that this includes the increase of revenues, growth in terms of business expansion, as well as growing profitability by building strategic partnerships and making strategic decisions. He mentions that business partnerships, market development, sales, initiatives, business expansion, as well as marketing contribute to business development. Steven has held important positions in the corporate world for a long time, and hence is well-acquainted with the essentials of business development.
The most accurate definition of business development underlines a set of tasks and processes that are meant to develop, as well as implement growth strategies within an organization in a profitable and sustainable manner. Steven Rindner mentions that business development typically takes place across all the major departments of a company, while also including the elements of cost savings, partnerships, negotiations, and networking. All of such activities and departments are known to be driven by, as well as aligned with, discerning business development goals.
Business development is largely about building and maintaining relationships. One of its key goals is to form strategic partnerships with other organizations in the target market, and leverage it to expand business prospects. This might include the process of developing a relationship with a lead founder to push them closer to a sale. It can also imply to leveraging current relationships for the purpose of generating referrals and develop new markets in diverse geographic areas.
Professional focusing on the business development aspect of a company requires a blend of marketing, communication, and sales skills. In the following points Steven Rindner provides a brief insight on the skills needed by business development executives to be optimally competent in their work:
- Marketing skills: In addition to building relationships with diverse stakeholders, business organizations have to work on promoting their brand, gaining deep intelligence of new markets, understanding the competition, as well as identifying and educating new target prospects. A lot of business development activities overlap with that of marketing, and therefore it is important for business development executives to try and hone the related skills.
- Communication skills: Maintaining long-term relationships with strategic partners, sharing valuable information with stakeholders as well as listening to concerns of potential clients, all of these activities require proficient communication and listening skills. It is extremely hard to progress much in regards to business development without having the capabilities to communicate confidently and clearly.
- Sales skills: Much like the professionals working at the sales department, business development executives also are required to have skills that help them in business development executives and ultimately nurturing relationships with both potential and existing clients. They must also have the capabilities to update sales customer relationship management databases on diverse sales activities, including follow-ups.
By employing professionals equipped with these three core skills, a company can accelerate their business development process to quite an extent.