Move the Needle, Disruption, Unpack, Push Back, Low-hanging Fruit…..
Any of these sound familiar? Like you just heard them (or even used them) on your last ZOOM call? These cliches have become the “script” within the corporate world. And let’s not forget PIVOT … that was cliche before we were leaning in! But in the wave of the pandemic and the unprecedented number of struggling businesses, “pivot” deserves some unpacking.
Transitioning a core business or diversifying into adjacent categories or distribution channels is critical for survival. But for many companies, this shift into new customer segments, product categories, revenue models, pricing strategies, etc. is uncharted territory. To succeed, it requires the same surgical approach and consideration you would use launching a new brand. While time is of the essence, a delicate balance of speed and comprehension will yield the best result. You can be quick, but don’t be in a hurry!
Over the past few months, I’ve been working with owners and operators in hospitality, food & beverage, accessories, apparel, and design who are eager, and in some cases desperate, to pivot their business. I have found that regardless of industry, I consistently pose a series of questions (below) to proactively uncover inevitable issues or glaring opportunities.
Here is my list:
There is no way to anticipate all the items that may impact your goal. But one way is to keep asking yourself, “If this fails, why?” Be exhaustive with the list up front, it will serve you well and preserve your precious resources.
Last, develop a rigorous process for review and adjustment. If you cannot poke holes in your own strategy, surround yourself with people who can. At the end of the day, stay nimble, patient, and let’s circle back if you need more guidance!