The rate of change in business is accelerating – dramatically. New opportunities are everywhere, and technology is driving innovation in virtually every industry.
What does that mean for your Middle Tennessee business? It’s pretty clear:
Evolve, or lose business to your competition.
Sometimes, a simple tweak is all your organization needs to stay at the top of your industry. But other times, remaining competitive requires a fundamental shift, or “pivot” – in business strategy, thinking, operations, offerings or staff.
Is the writing on the wall?
Here are three compelling reasons a business pivot may make sense for your organization:
- You need to keep pace with change. Sometimes, incremental changes are insufficient for keeping up with major advances in technology or trend shifts. If you focus solely on small improvements, your business may get stuck in a rut – or be headed in the wrong direction.
- You need new opportunities for driving revenue. When sales are flat, markets are tapped or competition is intense, revenue growth becomes increasingly difficult. To dramatically increase sales, you may need to offer new services, develop new products or tap into entirely new markets.
- You need to fuel innovation. Maintaining the status quo isn’t enough to thrive. Sooner or later, competitors will begin stripping away your customers, eroding your profits and making you obsolete. Pivoting your business can fuel innovation, allowing you to target new audiences and make groundbreaking changes that launch you ahead of the competition.
How can you begin pivoting your business?
Fundamentally shifting your business direction is not a decision to be taken lightly. While it does present great opportunities, pivoting is also risky. Weigh the potential benefits against the dangers, and always be deliberate and systematic when making major changes.
If you’re considering a pivot, here are three steps for heading in a new direction:
- Keep your customers’ needs and best interests at heart. At the end of the day, if customers don’t want or need what you offer, they have no compelling reason to do business with you. Make sure you understand your customers’ biggest “pain points.” Perform your due diligence to anticipate their future needs – and make them the foundation of everything you do.
- Be proactive. Pivoting your business is undeniably stressful for your team, creating extra work and heightening uncertainty. To minimize the disruption to your business, proactively communicate the reasons for your shift. Be honest about the changes it will bring, and work with your team to set both short-term and long-term goals. Celebrate as you hit them, and provide lots of feedback along the way.
- Test new offerings or service models with existing customers first. Identify the “early adopters” in your customer base. Ask them to help you test your new ideas, products, services or concepts, and gather feedback to make improvements before rolling out changes to everyone. Use your initial success with early adopters as the foundation for case studies, testimonials or other measurable results. Leverage this proof as third-party validation with your wider customer and prospect base.
Making big business changes?
Our Lebanon employment agency is here to help. Whether you’re testing new service concepts, exploring new markets or changing your company’s direction, we can provide the thinkers, experts and do-ers your organization needs.