Dave Brock: Small is the New Big

The impact of small businesses can be huge, and no one understands this better than Dave Brock.

Brock, BizSugar’s Contributor of the Week, is founder of Partners in Excellence, a global 15 member consulting firm centered on guiding a variety of Global 500 companies through their early stages and advising a variety of very large established companies as well.

“We’re a global consulting company focused on helping our clients connect with their customers, creating greater value and impact, while maximizing effectiveness and efficiency,” Brock explains. “What that means is we focus primarily on the leadership, sales, marketing, and business strategy.”

Launched in 1991, Brock’s company could certainly be considered a small business, but it focuses on a market that includes some real industry giants.

That approach is based, in part, on Brock’s extensive experience after years of working for some mammoth organizations including IBM, Tektronix and Keithley Instruments in management and executive positions. See his full bio here.

Of course, you don’t need to be a Fortune 500 CEO to get great leadership, marketing, and business strategy advice from Dave! He shares his wealth of experience regularly and free of charge for anyone visiting the Partners in EXCELLENCE blog.

Whether a company is large or small, all business strategy must start in the same place, Brock believes.

“We always start with the customer,” he says. “Too many organizations design their processes from the inside out, rather than the outside in. They always get it wrong, or its effectiveness is seriously limited. It’s always so much easier and impactful when you start everything from the customer point of view.”

He claims one of the keys to the company’s success has been its willingness to show the same commitment to its clients as as Brock and his team recommend they show to their customers.

“We want to make a difference in the lives of our customers—individuals and organizations.” Brock says. “It comes shining through in the way our clients perceive us and how we work with them.”

To demonstrate this commitment, Brock has taken things to what some business owners might consider extremes.

“We are so confident in our ability to do this, we offer a 100% money back guarantee on all our work,” he explains. “We have only had it exercised twice in our history—both because I initiated it, rather than the client. I thought we had not performed to the standard I expected. In each case, not only did the client insist on paying, but they got us engaged in many more projects. They clearly understood we were committed to having an impact and not just taking their money.”

Brock says his company’s strategy, as its name implies, focuses on working in partnership with clients rather than simply as an outside consultant with an outsider’s view of their business strategy.

“Our success is working collaboratively on very difficult situations, very challenging problems,” Brock said. “We truly believe the solutions we arrive at jointly are far superior [to] what we could recommend as outsiders or what they can do themselves.” It’s a very different view than that of most consulting companies, who tend to think of their clients as less expert than they are, he said.

Those solutions also focus on a very vital concept as far as Brock is concerned, a pragmatic approach to a company’s challenges!

“Too many consulting firms fail to recognize the realities of making something work in organizations,” Brock explains. “Each organization has its own personality, capabilities, capacities. There is no right answer (the theory) but there are best answers for each organization. Our goal is to help transform the organization. And to help them achieve results they never thought possible. But we have to have workable solutions, not great theory they can aspire to.”

Brock says he began using BizSugar on the recommendation of new community manager Niall Devitt, who had not yet joined the BizSugar team at the time, and has not been sorry about that decision.

“Initially, it was to extend our visibility and our audience,” Brock said. “Since then, I use it for my own learning—I find most of the posts informative, providing interesting perspectives. I like the diversity of topics and authors.”

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