“I love how

the face of a client or student lights up when I help them see their business challenges and opportunities differently. I have dedicated my professional life to getting this reaction from every person every time.

What I do with companies is close to what medical specialists do with you. They have the unique talents, knowledge, and expertise to diagnose the real causes and help you become stronger. How? Step into my digital office and find out”

Loaay Ahmed

strategic business therapist

Automotive (EMEA)

Mental health

Furniture

Insurance

what clients say

Tahani Al Daihani

President

Ultimate Solutions

"With Loaay you get an entrepreneur guiding other entrepreneurs and companies, not a theoretical consultant"

 

what's on your mind today?

new customers and profitability

How do we find more customers?


There are many ways to gaining new customers. For example, you could enter a new market by expanding regionally, focus more on new type of customers to sell to, or introduce new products or services that give you different customers you never dealt with before. Alternatively, you might want to improve your customer experience to a level that generates strong word of mouth and attract more customers. The question is: Which way is the most practical and most beneficial for your business?




How can we be more profitable?


There are more than 20 profit-generating models. Companies that know how to reinvent their performance through business design thinking can increase their profit margins while their competitors are decreasing theirs. Many global giants such as GE, Disney and others do exactly that throughout their journeys, but this is not exclusive to large corporations. In fact, SMBs are more flexible and can adapt much faster. The road to real and sustainable profitability lies in deeply understanding the customer. The kicker is that 81% of companies say they know who their key customers are and what they truly need and want, but only 37% of consumers say their favourite retailer understands them (IBM Commerce).




Our competition keep doing promos. How can we beat them?


Most companies in any retail category in Kuwait have this dominos effect behaviour. One company goes on sale and the rest follows like clockwork. If you go on sale because your competition is, we have news for you: you are NOT running your company, they are. It might feel uncomfortable to take a different path sometimes, but if done right, it’s far more beneficial. And if it makes sense to go on sale, then do it right. There are about nine different ways of running promos and the Kuwaiti market uses only about three or four of them. You can do much better.





keeping customers

How can we improve customer loyalty?


Unless your brand offers services or products that connect with people on a very deep emotional level (think how football fans feel about their favourite club) customer loyalty is a myth. Most customers stay with a brand as long as it fits their needs in ways that satisfy their standards. Figuring out who your services or products fit the most is half the solution. How to keep them engaged –not loyal– is the other half of it.




Other than poor service, why do customers leave?


Research shows that 80% of businesses believe that they're offering a great customer experience. Only 10% of their customers agree (Bain & Co). Companies lose only 5% of their customers to competitors. They lose 68% because they don’t show their customers enough interest to keep them. You can see the pattern of how most companies are not genuinely centred around their key customers, don't you? Of course, some customers like to go for the latest trends regardless. Is this the dominating behaviour of your key customers?




Isn’t customer satisfaction enough to know that we’re on track?


Shortest answer? No, it isn’t. Customers may be satisfied by the brand they purchase from but that doesn't stop them from exploring what's new by others because they're curious, bored or following the latest trend in the market. The challenge is switching your satisfied customers to delighted customers who act as natural believers and promoters for the brand. Also, if you're familiar with Net Promoter Score (NPS), this is not a true indicator either because between what a customer would do and has actually done there's often a gap.





growing the business

How do I know if our targets are too high or too low?


If you're hitting every target quarter by quarter, you're either hiring too many people in sales to reach the company targets, or you can guide the current team to achieve better results. Targets should be challenging. However, if you're struggling every month to reach your goals and you can't, either your employees are not the right fit or your targets are unrealistic. It's important to mention though that not all targets are financial, which means that while you're reaching your sales targets it doesn't mean that your achieving other business objectives. The question now becomes: How do you set the key business targets (both financial and non-financial) for your brand?




How can knightscapital help us grow?


The solution we offer depends on the challenge you have. It's quite common that we're presented with what appears to be the problem, but we quickly discover that it's only a symptom to a problem rather than the problem itself. We can work with you on many levels to depending on how much time and budget you have. While co-developing your strategic plans requires investments in the thousands, a single strategic business therapy (SBT) session is only KD100 and the first one is free anyway. One thing you can count on, we will guide you with practical insights in a straightforward way that’s engaging, simple to understand and to the highest international standards.




Other than profit, how can business growth be defined?


It depends on your definition of success. It’s been attributed to Henry Ford that he once said, “A business that makes nothing but money is a poor business.” Some companies believe in taking care of their employees, customers and service providers (a.k.a. suppliers) beyond the minimum legal obligations. Others get involved with society to help solve real issues. So if making millions is your only benchmark for growth, then that’s your only definition of success. Your definition of success comes from how you define your brand.





management challenges

How do I deal with inexperienced board members?


Over 80% of the Middle East businesses are either family-run or family controlled (PWC). This means that it is quite common to find yourself dealing with inexperienced board members who have inherited the business without much strategic understanding. All board members want maximum return on investment. Many of them are not comfortable with change or with taking risks. But these are not bad qualities. They are just constraints that require a careful balance between knowing how to master the art of persuasion and being the right person for the challenge. Easy? No. Doable? In most cases, yes. If you’re in it for the long term, learning meditation techniques can be quite helpful.




How can you empower employees when they have limited skills?


You don’t. But are they with limited skills or simply in positions that don’t fit their strong skills? Many companies in Kuwait either don’t know how to choose the right talent or avoid paying the right package for the right talent. Companies that increase their number of talented managers and double the rate of engaged employees achieve, on average, 147% higher earnings per share than their competition (Gallup). Working with talented people is more fun, more rewarding and more relaxing. No need to chase them for deadlines, teach them basics, and definitely, no need to micromanage.




Our family business is profitable and we don’t do what’s addressed here. Why all the fuss?


Only 30% of all family-owned businesses survive into the second generation. Hardly 12% will still be viable into the third generation (Family Business Alliance). Your financial success could be caused by several possibilities: You are in fact doing the right things subconsciously in a natural unplanned way; you are in a rare monopoly condition; or you are in a commodity business and your customers find your business good enough for now. Either way, customers needs and market conditions change. Your business will face serious difficulties and its longevity will be tested. If you want to build a business that generates more profit than what you are achieving today and one as such that you can successfully handover to the next generation, you need to be strategic in your thinking and performance.





building the brand

What’s the big deal really about having a brand vision?


If you were asked you to take your car and drive, chances are your first question will be, ‘Where should I go?’ And most likely, the next thing you would want to know is the reason ‘why’ you were given this destination. Unlike computers, which only need electricity and an Internet connection to function at full capacity, human beings need to understand the context, to be convinced, and to be motivated; only then they could move mountains. But even having a vision is not enough. An unshared vision comes across as hallucination of the boss. So remember, a brand vision itself is useless if not shared.




How can we (re)define our brand strategically?


In brand building there’s a roadmap that guides you to define milestones from the big business idea to what makes it different to the customers experiences journeys. These are key questions to be asked and thought of at each stage. Note: If you’re thinking now, ‘Yes, but this is a bit theoretical’, please remember that we’ve been in the Kuwaiti market since 1995 and we’ve witnessed companies that made nothing but money, for awhile, and eventually, they shut down or never grew to their true potential. Bottomline, you can’t stand out from others without first figuring out who you are.




Our family business is profitable and we don’t do what’s addressed here. Why all the fuss?


Only 30% of all family-owned businesses survive into the second generation. Hardly 12% will still be viable into the third generation (Family Business Alliance). Your financial success could be caused by several possibilities: You are in fact doing the right things subconsciously in a natural unplanned way; you are in a rare monopoly condition; or you are in a commodity business and your customers find your business good enough for now. Either way, customers needs and market conditions change. Your business will face serious difficulties and its longevity will be tested. If you want to build a business that generates more profit than what you are achieving today and one as such that you can successfully handover to the next generation, you need to be strategic in your thinking and performance.





we ran this masterclass in London.

see what the attendees say about it

After a great success in London, this B2C customer experience masterclass comes to Kuwait for the first time in January 2020. If you are looking for a transformational learning experience, this is it.

Hover to discover what
strategic business therapy
is about

here's what happened with Salem

(a 5-minute story)

“You need to meet Loaay,” Abdullah said. “He knows how to help you find the right problem.”

        “But I tried everything.”

        I trust my friend, not consultants … but what else can I do?

    So here I am. 11 AM, a café nearby the Kuwait Opera House meeting a stranger. He is supposed to figure out why my business is failing; why our revenue has not grown in two years. As I approach, Loaay takes a step towards me. This is it. He stands tall, extends a welcoming smile; firm handshake. I glance at my watch; hope this isn’t going to be another hour I can’t get back.

       After a couple of pleasantries Loaay urges me to talk. Reluctantly I tell him about my grandfather; how he started the fabric business sixty-three years ago. I picture him now as I explain how the business grew from one small store to seven stores across Kuwait, with dealers in select neighbouring markets. I feel the pride lifting me and … then … slowly deflate when I realise that I could be the one to lose the business. I take a tentative sip of my coffee. I’m the CEO. I know that almost 90% of family owned businesses cease to...

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