Change the angle
”If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it” - this is one of the most dangerous mindsets that one could have in business. More so in these times.
A lot of companies that reach a satisfying level (another tricky concept) develop a kind of tunnel vision and stop looking carefully at their market, customers and competitors. They stop searching for trends and are no longer trully focused on what their customers wish. I am not talking about basic needs, but about wishes, wants, delights. This approach leaves their customers to the taking by smarter, hungrier and more agile competitors, that will identify uncovered areas and swoop them away.
Not paying attention to the market and its trends poses a simmilar, if not even more significant, threat. Maintaining products or lines of products without matching them with the current needs and expectations may leave a company in a very poor situation: absolete. If you get to the point of questioning that maybe you are behind what the market expects, it may already be to late. Reinventing a line of products, depending on the industry, may prove very expensive and time consuming, resources that are pretty scarce if things are already going downhill.
In order to not find yourself in the difficult situations I’ve described earlier, you should try to reestablish contact with your customers and employees. Real contact. Try to:
- meet at least once a year with your customers and discuss about their needs, their expectations, their industry challenges (If you have lots of them, congratulations! Meet with at least your top 20%). Follow up the meetings with solutions, recommendations, advice. Show you care!
- discuss with your front end people, sales, marketing at least once a month. Make strategic meetings and talk about competition, challenges, opportunities, fresh ideas. Use their eyes and ears and feel the market, feel the shifts. Be involved! It will help you adjust a lot faster than most of your competition to any challenges that may arise.
Use all the information you gather, whether to make tactical plans, redrawing a part of your strategy or, most importantly, innovate. For a business to grow, it needs to be well grounded and all-connected. Start connecting or reconnecting now! Use the information! And you will reach the conclusion that, even if it’s not broken, it can be made better.
If anywhere along the road you feel that some help would come in handy, give us a call. We’ll be happy to lend a hand!