We’ve been through a wild ride since March, and the tectonic shift that’s taken place has tilted the fortunes of some industry sectors to extremes. On the one hand, airlines, for example, are fighting for survival while RV wholesale shipments reported by the RV Industry Association posted their best month in 2020 and the highest monthly total since October 2018.
These contrasting examples are the result of the whims of fate, and in six months or a year, an unforeseen global event could mean a complete reversal in these sectors or perhaps in yours. Are you prepared if this happens? What do you do if economic growth contracts in your industry take a hit before the end of the year?
Learn to See Things Differently
The key is for you and your team to be willing to get below the surface of what you currently see as your business. When conditions change, so do the needs of customers because they have different kinds of problems demanding different kinds of solutions. Take a look at the adjacent photo. The ice above the water represents the products and services that help your customers during a typical, operational frenzied life.
Understandably, we can become so focused on the “fog of more“ of our current offerings or activities to survive that we miss the bigger picture. Underneath the water is a mass of ice probably 5 times the size of the ice above the water. It represents the problems your customers are grappling with during extreme market conditions. Translation: there exists a significant opportunity for you as a leader and your team.
Challenge the Status Quo
The shift in thinking needs to begin where it always does—with you, the Leaders! Challenge yourself and your team’s comfort zones by executing on a different, more creative, yet powerful approach. It begins with having the courage to see things differently. This is more commonly referred to as “Vision”, one of the foundational qualities of Leadership.
You can reinvent your company completely if you like, but you might not need to just yet. For now, here is a simple but powerful exercise you can take your team through, which involves brainstorming ideas around four simple areas:
- Assess what our customers value today. Are they migrating to the services we are not offering?
- Embrace the changes that are taking place in our industry and fast.
- Anticipate what our customers might want tomorrow. Let’s start tracking investment and spending trends.
- Evaluate how we can drastically improve our offerings in ways that are better, faster, cheaper, and easier to improve life for our customers.
Develop the habit of using a simple framework like this in your weekly meetings and implement changes. You don’t need to need to go so far as to create a new business or market overnight, but you would be amazed at how committing to making a courageous change could change your fortunes for the better.
If you have any questions or would like some assistance in implementing this strategy, don’t hesitate to ask. I’ll provide you with some complimentary guidance to make sure your efforts are successful. Just send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call me directly at 778.317.8064