Whether it be pandemic related or simply a change of how customers are buying, I've heard of so many stories this past year of business owners having to re-invent themselves and their businesses to either survive or thrive!
Many businesses are doing better than before because they chose to seize the opportunities that lay before them, by taking the time to re-assess, change their business model as required and re-adjust continuously as required!
1. Ask Yourself Why You're Still in the Game
As a business owner, it really comes down to asking a very honest question of what you are willing to do (and not do, also very important!) during the change. Circling back to the big "WHY?" question of why you started your business to begin, what it represents to you, how much you are willing to change, and for what reasons, are the first things that need to be evaluated before jumping into tactics and "what needs to be done".
Purpose is a powerful thing, and being clear on why you are still in the game will be the biggest motivator to get you through any change plan!
These things need to be jotted down and remembered since they are the "anchors" that will provide stability throughout the change design process; points that constantly need to be referenced to ensure that your fundamentals and your integrity are not being sacrificed.
2. Develop the Game Plan
With your core values and company "vision" in check, you will need to roll up your sleeves and start looking at the actual business plan and strategy now of what specific things need to change in your business to not only get you through the change, but also perhaps increase your revenue in the process!
Both sides of the P&L need to be revisited
1) Revenue / Marketing / Sales - Customers need to be heard during this change! What do they like, what do they not like anymore, what are they willing to pay now vs. then, etc... Should new products be introduced that align better with the market? Are you missing out on a big opportunity because buying behaviours have changed? Business owners need to re-evaluate all possible revenue streams, prioritize them and COMMIT to a revised Marketing/Sales Plan that aligns with the "new world".
2) Expenses / Costs / Operational Processes - Just because you worked a certain way for years, does not mean that it will work through the transition. Re-evaluating your operations and how you produce your product/service, and how it aligns to your new Marketing/Sales Plan is essential to free up $$$ by ensuring you are spending the bare minimum to continue producing quality products/services that your customers are still excited to buy from you!
The good news is that, like all major changes and challenges, a proper plan, and the resolve to stick to it, even when times get tough, is the only way to see the transition through. Very important to keep in mind that a plan does not need to be complicated (actually, the more complicated, the less chance of success!), just something that is high-level enough to capture the heart of the matter. The core values of the business and what cannot be comprised throughout the transition, are essential must-haves and the plan should also be granular enough to create weekly momentum with the actual work that will get there!
3. Get Feedback and Adjust If Need Be
While your plan is being executed, measure, measure, and measure your results and keep an eye on cashflow! You need to know if things are working or not, and define the timelines you are willing to accept before you go back to the drawing board on your plan and adjust accordingly. Great news is that you will have tangible, "in your face" feedback at that point regarding what exactly needs to change.
4. Trust Yourself!
Lastly, trust your instincts! No one knows your business like you do and no one has the drive and determination to ensure its success like you do either! Use those instincts to fuel the decisions you need to make to get you through the transition, and never forget that as long as you have a proper plan, you are simply making good decisions each day to get you to your goal!
Having to adapt and change your entire business model around can be tough, demotivating and challenging since we are forced to question ourselves so much in the process.
I wish anyone who is facing these types of changes in their business, strength and courage. Taking the time to define what is important to you, what you are willing to compromise, developing that strategy/plan and then getting through those tough moments knowing that you stuck to your values, your integrity and your plan, is one of the most rewarding accomplishments in life!
Best of luck.
About Norm Tam
Norm Tam is a Montrealer at heart who helps business owners
make more money by becoming better leaders.
Contact Info: firstname.lastname@example.org or (514) 968-7648