Build a Better Business Case in Zero to Sixty

Innovation and initiative are great talents for federal employees to exude every day. The ideas that you generate today can lead to process improvement, reduced expenses as well as improved customer service. Yet the road to develop, design and implement great ideas can be a challenging one.

The ability to create, implement and manage new concepts starts in one place- your business case. A solid business case will leverage your business acumen, communication skills and research to generate a solid foundation for your efforts. In addition, using a multi-tiered process that allows you to determine how to move new ideas forward will help you visualize the potential for tangible results.

So, how do you go from idea to implementation in zero to sixty? Check out the quick tips below and begin to rev your creative engines.

  1. Bring in the “SMEs.” These are your subject matter experts (SMEs) who have various field experience moving concepts¬†into production. They will serve as your guides during the initial process and share lessons learned.
  2. Identify diverse sources. Your research will help you determine the “good, bad and the ugly” regarding our business case as well as prepare you for challenging questions and answers about getting your idea off the ground.
  3. Consider the possibilities. Have you ever been so determined to move forward with the “best” solution only to find some holes in your theory? Be careful not to let your bias get in the way of your big idea plans by weighing all of the options on their individual merits. Also, be comfortable with the fact that your “#1” pitch may not be so great after taking a second glance.
  4. Pitching failure happens. Despite the best of intentions, sometimes failure will occur with pitching a business case. It may be a culmination of bad timing, lack of resources or staff to push an idea forward. This is the time be patient and reconsider your options about making the effort to move forward.
  5. Perseverance vs. Annoying. It is one thing to tactfully approach leadership with new strategies to keep an organization moving forward. It is another thing to constantly check up on the status of your ideas without allowing people the time to process the information provided.
  6. Assess the risk. You may have the best concept ready to launch with just a handful of resources to revolutionize your organization, however it may go nowhere have not taken the time to consider that with change comes some risks. Assess your plan and ensure your SWOT analysis considers all the possibilities including where your organization may be in the next 5 to 10 years.
  7. Know your audience. Who do you plan to sell your idea to at work? Will you start with your immediate supervisor or will your idea go straight to leadership for consideration? The way you pitch an idea to middle management versus the executive team is different. It helps if you take the time to know how people like to receive information. For example, does your audience prefer visuals or just text? Do you have credible sources to back up your research or not? Will you be able to stand up to leadership scrutiny and survive?


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