By: David Brim January 1, 2013
In life one thing is certain and that is that change will come. Time marches on and as it does movement occurs that creates opportunities for those that are prepared and threats to those who are not. This applies to business, sports, personal lives…etc. On the basketball court, one of the most common outcries you’ll here from a coach is them telling their offensive players to “Move without the Ball”. As offensive players move, the defensive players are forced to make decisions and shift. This movement keeps the defense off balance and presents opportunities to exploit the them that would not exist if everyone was standing still.
In business this happens as well. In attempts to increase sales, gain market share or increase brand awareness companies “make moves”. These “moves” keep the competitors in a given industry on their toes causing them to react by investing in R&D, hiring new talent or increasing their marketing efforts.
In business there are four high-level forms of movement or change that can occur…
- Movement in your Company : Product changes, Personell changes, financing changes, gaining / loss of customers, etc
- Movement within your Competitors : Competitors face the same potential changes as your company.
- Movement within your target Customer segments: Is your target customer base growing or declining? Are there factors impacting your customer’s budget? What new influences are impacting your customers?
- Movement within your Industry: Is your overall industry growing or declining? Is your industry stable or volatile? Are they any disruptive technologies that have impacted other industries that could be utilized or harnessed in your industry?
Regardless of what movement is occurring you need to be balanced in order to take advantage of it. Balance is something that legendary basketball coach John Wooden stressed very often. One popular quote from Wooden was “Be Quick, but don’t hurry”. Having strong balance whether in sports or business means that you’re prepared and ready to act in a synergistic way with the ebbs and flows of change – allowing you to embrace change instead of combat it.So how can you take advantage of the power of movement?
- Become a student of recognizing the perfect moment to strike based on stimuli presented
- Develop a variety of skill sets, resources and plans ready to take advantage of various scenarios that may arise
- Balance your Organization by developing quality systems and processes
- Monitor competitors to see what moves they are making and learn from their mistakes and successes
- Invest in researching your overall industry and target customers to stay on top of game changers, or trends that could impact your business. Consider Trend Spotting, Trend Watching, PSFK , Think with Google, and even Google Trends to monitor increases in search frequencies of various keywords to indicate fluctuations in demand. You can also monitor social media chatter to uncover changes in sentiment, desires and needs.
- Exercise the power of your Imagination and bring the change you seek into existence
Synthetic Imagination:- Through this faculty, one may arrange old concepts, ideas, or plans into new combinations. This faculty creates nothing. It merely works with the material of experience, education, and observation with which it is fed. It is the faculty used most by the inventor, with the exception of the who draws upon the creative imagination, when he cannot solve his problem through synthetic imagination.
Creative Imagination:-Through the faculty of creative imagination, the finite mind of man has direct communication with Infinite Intelligence. It is the faculty through which “hunches” and “inspirations” are received. It is by this faculty that all basic, or new ideas are handed over to man.
- Keep up to date on best practices and advances in your industry. Strategies, Tactics, products / services and daily operations that caused your business to be very successful 5-10 years ago may no longer work and be “outdated”. Keep your business fresh!
- Build a surplus of resources, or income streams, that will enable you to weather the storm and/or invest in innovations to compete successfully in the marketplace.
- Remember the cost of inaction is often greater than the risk of action. Physically speaking, limited movement for too long can make you less flexible and more stale. Exercising, or moving your body, helps improve not only your physical state, but your mind as well. The same is true of your business…keep it moving!
Happy New Years everyone!