The 12 Gifts of Christmas – for the CI professional to give themself throughout the year:
- On the first month of the new year give yourself the gift of key intelligence questions. Focus on questions that will impact decisions. Prune away the legacy outputs that are the product of last year’s inertia.
- On the second month of the new year decide which 5 (or more) new frameworks you are going to apply to your analysis efforts this year, and make plans to learn all about them.
- One the third month of the year interview 5 individuals in your partner / distribution, etc. channel who can provide meaningful insights on the competitors and customers in your market.
- On the fourth month of the new year, interview 5 individuals in the sales channel who can provide meaningful insights on competitors in your market.
- On the fifth month of the year attend SCIP US.
- On the sixth month of the year, buy, borrow, or otherwise experience a competitor’s product(s) and service(s) first hand.
- On the seventh month of the year, remember to take your vacation.
- On the eight month of the year, ask yourself what new books you’ve read about business, competitive intelligence, and strategy. If the answer is less than 5, pick this month to get that number up.
- On the ninth month of the year, make plans to find at least 5 new Web sites that provide open source intelligence.
- On the tenth month of the year, make plans to put all of that human intelligence, open source intelligence, hands on experience, reading, and your new framework knowledge to good use.
- On the eleventh month of the year, do some CI brown-bags to help raise the CI IQ of the organization. Launch your network of collectors.
- On the twelveth month, put up the tree, have some eggnog and rest assured that you’ve improved decision making in large and small ways across the organization.
Because on January first, it’s time to raise the bar again. The competition never rests.
By Sean Campbell
By Scott Swigart