The new economy that is happening in major markets throughout the globe causes us to question our future. Rethinking your company’s strategy is no longer a luxury, instead, it’s essential for your continued success. 

The problem is, our assumptions of how a market will behave may not apply anymore. For instance, are you in a mature market where the price is everything? Or, will moving your manufacturing offshore increase your profit margin? Before Covid-19, these assumptions would have been the ‘smart strategy’ to success. But today, they can’t be counted on because border restrictions have changed everything.

No matter the type of organization you’re running, small operation, startup, or international enterprise, it’s necessary to rethink your company’s strategy based upon new insights that may defy conventional wisdom. This rethinking process is invigorating to some leaders but can cause tremendous angst for others who have long enjoyed success following known patterns. 

Smart leaders in both camps make it their number one job to challenge all assumptions, not rely on past successes, and take the time to rethink how they can transform their current business into a powerhouse. There are four ways to rethink your business strategy listed below that you and your leadership team can use, but first of all, rethink how you’re going to change.

There are four types of change and they are very different from each other. Knowing the kind of change that you need is essential to your success. 

The first type of change is a “Tweak.” We call it that because it’s a combination of minor adjustments made to your staff or financial resources while retaining the business’ current vision and organizational strategy. An example of a tweak might be adding a specific program or adjusting an innovation process to increase speed to market. 

The second type of change is a “Transition.” Our research shows that if leaders and first-line directors are not meeting the contribution expectations in their role, it’s because they are out of alignment with what their customers find relevant. A transition rethinks the current people or financial resources used to determine if changes to their roles and responsibilities are required. This takes courage because no one likes to rethink themselves out of a job. Therefore, all leaders up and down the organization need to provide a safe environment for everyone to challenge conventional wisdom and not make knee-jerk decisions that penalize someone.

The third type of change is a “Transformation.” A transformation rethinks what everyone and everything is doing to move a business to its next growth stage. This includes the people, resources, vision, and the organizational structure of the company. This is a substantial undertaking that requires the entire leadership team’s full attention. These dynamics need to be explored from many different angles, which also requires the full participation of all team members. Anything less damages the organization’s chances of success and threatens its future. 

The fourth type of change is a “Turnaround.” A turnaround is required when the organization is in a severe cash flow crisis with related issues pulling the organization apart. There are many reasons why this occurs, ranging from ineffective leadership, outdated products and services, or disruptive innovations to a market. Whatever the problem, businesses in this situation require immediate rethinking and action to stamp out the problems before the company grows entirely out of control. 

Unfortunately, many businesses have stopped operations because they were unable to rethink their way through their challenges. Of course, this is a bi-product of the pandemic we’re all experiencing. Our firm offers a suite of Rethink assessments, workshops and coaching services found here to meet these growing challenges.