Member John Maydonovitch Speaks: Don’t Miss the Analyst Calls

The Challenge:

At a recent Alliance meeting, member CEOs were discussing strategies for managing risk in their client portfolios. Some felt exposed, since the vast majority of their business was with one or two large companies.

If you were in this situation, what would you do?

If your clients are publicly traded companies, make sure to attend their quarterly analyst calls. They are open to the public, and the insight you gain from them can radically influence your business strategy.

I have also recently dealt with client portfolio risk: business with one of my largest clients has been slowing down. Naturally, I wanted to know why. So I flipped open my smartphone, drew up my stocks application and found out when the quarterly analyst call would happen. The app even had the call in number. I joined the call with my sales team and we listened to the Wall Street analysts asking the CEO and CFO questions about business. It became immediately apparent that the company was shifting manufacturing out of California. I needed to act.

The decisions of your large company clients are not only opaque, but can make or break your business. Leverage the work of the analysts, who have rigorously done their homework across multiple companies over many years. Don’t just rely on what is printed in the press: this information is often retrospective or hand-fed from the companies themselves. The analysts ask tough questions that give you actionable business insight. In my case, I immediately put resources into a marketing campaign to source new sales leads. Since then, I have diversified clientele and reduced risk. Had I thought the slowdown in business was just a hiccup, and not the structural shift it was, I may have not made these prescient moves that ultimately benefited my business.