When the economy changes quickly, companies often react in very predictable ways. They make cuts in their operations to lower their expenses, raise their prices, or learn to live with less margin. Although these are in many leaders’ playbooks, we recommend rethinking your present circumstances through our “Growth Model” lens that allows you to see your new business environment as a driver for strategic change rather than simply weathering the storm.
Dealing with change is a lot like playing chess. There are many moves and many can prove unfruitful. But make the right three moves and it’s checkmate! Here are three moves you can make that will help you drive your strategy to success.
- Strategy must be sustainable. Your business can make sustainability more than a buzzword if you think through both your short and long-term horizons. When trouble comes, leaders tend to make quick decisions that satisfy the short term but ignore the future. This approach can suck the life out of any good product or service when it is asked to do something it was not designed to accomplish. Of course, the business climate must always be taken into consideration, but with the understanding that when the market changes – and it will change – you want your organization to be in an optimum strategic position to take advantage of that new reality.
- Strategy must be flexible. COVID-19 forced businesses to move far more quickly. Today, leaders need to maintain a higher speed while also designing new ways to do business that sustain them. Just like any habit, it takes time and practice to learn new ways of doing things and remaining flexible in decision making is required. By anticipating shifts in the economy and customer needs, new ways to collaborate with your team can be accomplished. The key is to focus on solutions and remain open to changing your plan.
- Strategy is only the first half. Implementation is the second. One of the single most dramatic changes all organizations need to deal with are employees who want to work at places that have a strong sense of purpose. This directly impacts how quickly a new strategy can be implemented because they expect more from their companies than simply being profitable. They expect them to act with purpose focusing on both employees and customers, not just their bottom line. This is a very new reality that many corporate leaders are struggling to understand.
Organizations who are thriving today are those who know how to navigate volatile and unpredictable economic conditions, be agile in their business operations and make big changes that are in the best interests of both their employees and customers.