top-secretSecrets are powerful. They connect people and hold organizations together. Most Mafia flicks have a character that is in high demand by the organization and the authorities. The character is in a position of power because he is knows the secrets of the family. If the authorities gain access to those secrets, they win. Invariably, there will be a battle between the opposing forces because people want to know where the bodies are buried so they can destroy the organization.

Companies have secrets that affect long-term success, too. While less macabre than buried bodies, unfound business secrets can still destroy the business. Knowing the secrets hidden in corporate databases is the difference between growth and lost marketshare. Invest resources in finding the information that makes your company better. Get started by asking these questions:

Why do your customers choose your company over the competition?

What are the internal and external trends that affect your business?

How do processes and policies help or hurt your company?

What data provides actionable information?

Where do lost customers go?

How many new customers are hit-&-runners?

Which social media sites are your customers using?

How does everything (yes, everything) work together to benefit customers and company?

Why were specific processes and policies established?

Are the processes and policies still needed?

How do your customers move between channels?

Why isn’t your social media strategy working?

What is the tipping point that makes customers click, call, or visit?

Having knowledge about the items listed above is “knowing where the bodies are buried.” Body parts are often scattered across channels, departments, and divisions. It’s like a secret formula where segments are given to different people to safeguard it. They have to work together to assemble it into something usable.

Who knows where the bodies are buried in your business? Is it you? Someone else? Or, is it possible that no one within your organization knows the innermost workings that drive revenue, profitability, and customer satisfaction?

Seeking answers often finds more questions than answers. Keep digging until you find all of the body parts that make your company unique. The information you discover along the way can be used to make your business more efficient, your marketing more effective, and your customers more loyal.

Every self-respecting wise guy knows that someone in the organization needs to know where the bodies are buried. Shouldn’t you know, too?