Case Study: How I helped a Health Startup Increase Sales with an Issue Tree

Strategy Consulting works for startups, too

Last week, I enjoyed consulting another startup on its growth mission.

I used the same tools I have used as a consultant for years.

Here is how:


  • Health startup, early stage

  • They offer an innovative health coaching program with a focus on special rehabilitation techniques after surgery

  • Roughly a dozen customers


  • The sales were not enough to sustain the enterprise (bootstrapped)

  • Not enough funds for an expensive business coach or large-scale marketing activities

  • Limited time resources


  • A half-day strategy workshop

  • Breaking down the problem with an issue tree

  • Defining needed analysis

Let’s dive in.

After clarifying the situation, we broke down the problem into 4 levels.

The first level breakdown is simple. We used a mathematical structure to keep it MECE (Mutually Exclusive, Collectively Exhaustive).

Breakdown level 1

The number of leads multiplied by the conversion rate gives you the total sales.

From here, it got a bit more tricky:

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