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How Nygard Gets It Right

Nygard’s Golden Jubilee Review

It’s not an everyday occurrence to discover an individual who has pulled himself up by his bootstraps to achieve phenomenal success with a business that’s still breaking barriers, still achieving firsts, and still innovating fifty years later. What does it take? How did he achieve it all? And how can we achieve similar successes?

That’s what we’ll explore in this tri-weekly series. We’ll break down fashion mogul Peter Nygard’s achievements and look at how his accomplishments can serve as practical applications to others in business and life.

How Nygard Gets It Right 

What does it take to get it right? For fashion mogul Peter Nygard, it was thinking strategically from the very beginning in an industry he knew nothing about fifty years ago. That strategic thinking led to him being right about the steps he took.

When Nygard talked about his fifty years of business success, he shared what ‘being right’ from the start did for him. It gained him the credibility he needed for others to believe in him and trust all of his ideas going forward.

But being right for Peter Nygard wasn’t about being lucky. It was about him having certain foundational business strengths that he built upon to create successes.

One article (“The 5 Key Success Factors Of Business” – suggests that a strategic focus is the first key to ‘getting it right’. The five success factors it describes are,

  • Strategic Focus (Leadership, Management, Planning)
  • People (Personnel, Staff, Learning, Development)
  • Operations (Processes, Work)
  • Marketing (Customer Relations, Sales, Responsiveness)
  • Finances (Assets, Facilities, Equipment)

The article makes this key point about a strategic focus—which Nygard’s initial approach of a customer survey and success as a newcomer to the industry fifty years ago illustrate:

“It doesn’t do much good to focus on what you as the leader, manager or owner want. What matters most is to focus on what the customer values most.”

However, Nygard also applied a strategic focus to each of the factors the article outlines:

Company research shows that his company offers great benefits to its staff and it has a comprehensive development program.

Nygard practices continuous improvement to ensure that his operational processes are efficient and effective at all times.

His marketing strategies have a core focus on customer relations with a sales process that is there to support the customer in every way possible.

The aspect of finances described in the article as reflective of assets, facilities and equipment is also a strategic focus for Nygard. He ensures that his company has the latest equipment and technology to achieve its operational objectives.

When he can’t find the equipment to meet his objectives, he creates it. That’s how Nygard became a technology leader in the industry resulting in him speaking at a Galeries Lafayette Paris conference for top retailers in Europe. One year, he was invited to give the keynote to share how others in the industry could incorporate technology in their businesses as well.

An important point the article makes, which is also reflective of Nygard’s systematic approach within his company, is this:

We have identified five powerful success factors for business and organizations. But they cannot be treated as separate departments doing their own thing. They all need to be aligned in one system. They need to reinforce each other. 

The arm needs to know what the leg is doing, and the eye needs to know what the ear is doing, to use a “body” analogy. It is the job of the strategic leaders of the organization to make sure everything is connected, works as one, works as a whole, so that the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. Results will then be truly outstanding, far greater than you ever believed possible.

If you want to know how Nygard got it right from the start and continues to get it right, know that these 5 factors outlined tells a part of that story.

Getting it right from the start sets the pace. As Nygard once said, “There’s nothing like being right to be believed. Once you’re right, people start believing you.”

Written by Jones Bahamas

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