THE ONION-PEELING METHOD: STARTUPS AND ENTREPRENEURS, LAYER BY LAYER

WE DIDN'T INVENT THE ONION – OR THE WHEEL – BUT WE'VE DEFINITELY UPGRADED THE PEELING METHOD.





Onion peeling is an accepted method in the world of organizational psychology whereby layers of problems are removed until reaching the root of the problem – the main barrier standing between the organization and success. Given that all great recipes begin with onion, the ones we prepare for our clients require these layers as well.


The result? Delicious and successful, even if there are a few tears along the way.


The process we employ involves dividing the onion into 6 layers.


This method is advisable for older companies with an operational history, for Start-ups, and for initiatives within veteran companies.


  1. The personal perspective, DNA

  2. External business environment

  3. Internal business environment

  4. A measured/rapid process of determining strategy

  5. Killing sacred cows

  6. A business compass


1st layer – The personal perspective – DNA

  • What background is the entrepreneur coming from?

  • What are their values?

  • Which direction changes have they taken during their careers?

  • I'm scared. Does this mean I don't have what it takes to succeed?

  • What is the entrepreneur's DNA? How do we know when it's alright to give up and not continue with an initiative which is destined to fail?

  • What is the entrepreneur's story?

  • What is the entrepreneur's mission?

  • What do clients/employees have to say about the entrepreneur (in his opinion)?

  • What are the first / most important things known about the entrepreneur/ organization?

  • What leads potential clients to meet with the entrepreneur (in the entrepreneur's opinion)?


2nd layer – The external business environment

  • Analysis of BCG, opportunities and threats

  • Who are the competitors?

  • What is the market potential and what is the target market?

  • What are the greatest challenges faced by the initiative?

  • How should the organization operate in the world of digital transformation?


3rd layer – Analysis of the internal environment

  • What are the organization's strengths and weaknesses?

  • How does the entrepreneur handle in-house challenges?

  • What are the services provided currently and in the future?

  • What are the competitive advantages, what is the business differentiation?

  • Who are the target audiences?


4th layer – A measured/rapid process to determine strategy

  • How does the organization need to operate in times of crisis and in the midst of Corona?

  • How is the strategy affected by daily reality when the future is unclear?

  • Early-stage strategy pattern for early adopters followed by product changes over time in order to simplify.

  • Ad-hoc, "Flexispeed" – speed + flexibility


5th layer – Killing sacred cows (Startups within veteran companies)

  • In comparison to startups, what are the reasons for the failure of entrepreneurial projects inside the company? Lack of alignment, cannibalization, politics which undermine and destroy.

  • Initiative operations in a separate building which is still near enough – advantages and disadvantages

  • Organizational movement? Jumping on the bandwagon


6th layer – Business compass (core)

  • What is the winning trinity – company mission, values and vision

  • What is the company's calling card?

  • What is the company story?

  • What is the message the entrepreneur is aiming for?

  • What is the value proposition to the client?

  • What are the company's core values?


The method is the cumulative result of the RGB team, dozens of years of international experience, management, initiative, investment recruitment, business development, data, lessons learned, abilities, hard and soft skills and talents, an understanding of cross- cultural business communications and more.


The results of the peeling process, in which I take teams on a journey to excellence, are inserted into a funnel in the in-depth strategic inquiry. It is crucial to understand – there are no sacred cows here, and as mentioned - the peeling involves both participation and tears.


The decision regarding G/No Go, the distilled result will be precisely adapted to the company and assist them to conform themselves to the changing, dynamic world and to a better understanding of client needs.


We know that this in-depth process is both right and critical for all manner of companies, notwithstanding size or number of employees or the branch within which they operate.


As one client who successfully went through the process explained it, "the onion-peeling method is an experience much like giving birth…"



Remark: Though the method is based on six principle guiding stages, the overall process is both more broad-based and more in-depth.

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