Let’s start by no longer using the word ‘pivot’.

If I told you that business growth was still possible in the face of uncertainty, would you believe me? I’ll let you in on a little secret: it is. We just need to work on a new way of looking at things.

This month I am going to talk about a topic that I have heard from just about every business I work with. The pressure to pivot.

Let’s start by no longer using the word ‘pivot’.

For me, the word ‘pivot’ conjures up the discomfort of having knee-jerk reactions, making rash decisions, and hoping for the best. It came into our lives with full noise early last year and brought with it an increasing amount of innuendo. Make no mistake, there are plenty of stories of businesses making changes to their strategies and seeing successes as a result. But now what I’m hearing constantly is the pressure to pivot, or to pack it in.

This is why I prefer the word ‘reshape’.

Reshaping your business to encourage growth in new areas will equip you to move forward, despite the challenges. Pandemic or not, this is a unique opportunity to explore how to prime your business to become more agile, and to consider how any changes made will contribute to your long term strategy.

Here’s what you can do right now:

  • Use this time to really understand your customers’ needs and whether you really meet those needs. What do those needs look like in the future?
  • Don’t be afraid to take on new responsibilities, learn new skills, and work with your team to test out different business models and pricing structures.
  • Reach out to your network to help make things happen. When customers become your advocates, your local community can have a much bigger impact than when you simply rely on yourself or your team to spread the word.

The impacts of Covid-19 have been unrelenting, and have thrown usual day-to-day processes into a whirlwind for many small business owners. So what’s the difference between thriving and adapting to changing conditions? The answer is, not a lot.

Most importantly, absorb and learn from failure so you can make better decisions tomorrow. In other words, it’s time for a session on reshaping your business. If you’d like my help on how to approach this, please get in touch.

Lessons from the past

Understandably we are all very focused on looking ahead right now, but I wanted to share a thought-provoking moment I experienced recently, after going through the process of writing my own personal story of business and life.

Until I took the time to purposefully reflect on my journey so far, I hadn’t appreciated that there were so many examples of me, quite accidentally, doing the things that I consider to be critical in good business practice.

Take for example my experience as the leader of my school marching team. I was young, but I was a gallant leader! Organised, meticulous, and in some ways writing the first pages of the future me.

What elements of your formative years inform the ways in which you approach your business practice today? I’d love to hear some examples.

My top tip for right now.

Now, with renewed clarity, let’s get back to looking ahead. The question I’m going to ask you is, where are you going? And is it because of intentional planning or simply wishful thinking?

This is where reshaping your approach to your business can really have an impact. Yes, it’s true we are surrounded by uncertainty and a feeling of being on tenterhooks, but it’s also true that we can focus our minds on positive thinking, possibilities and a planned path ahead. It’s removing the doubt that comes with wishful thinking and replacing it with intent, courage and persistence.

“It’s like entering a maze with absolute faith that you will find your way through.”

See you on the other side.

The only difference between the maze analogy and your actual path ahead, is that there are quite possibly some options you can choose from. That in itself is an exciting prospect! There is a way through, and you will get there.

As we approach the finish line, now is the time that we usually start thinking about how we’ll kick off a new year. Next month I will be delving into some ways to navigate these last remaining months to set yourself up for a strong start to 2022.

And yes, I’ll be doing it slightly differently, because I myself am reshaping the ways I approach things as I respond to the changing environment we are all facing. But guess what? I am feeling positive, motivated and driven to make it through, and to invite you along on the journey, too.

Call Heather