Running a business in today’s 21st century is complex. But it will be easier if your business has the right focus.
A successful organization requires a leader who can see the bigger picture and devise an efficient action plan to get there. This is one of the reasons you need a clear focus on the right business goals.
However, the big question is, how do you know your business is focusing on the right goals? Read on as we answer this question in this piece.
How Do I Know It's Time to Change Business Focus?
As a business owner, the following are some pointers that show it might be time to change the focus of your business:
Your target market is changing. Your customers are the litmus test that shows whether your business goals are properly aligned. You must understand that your business exists to meet your customers' needs. So, if your company is no longer meeting the needs or wants of your customers, it’s time to make big changes. You need to find a way to make your product better or find a new product or service to offer. If you don't make these changes, you'll be left behind because no one will buy a product that does not meet their needs and wants..
Your competitors are doing things differently. Sometimes, you need to look at market leaders in your industry to see if your business goals are in line. If your competitors are innovating and you're not, you will likely lose your market share. Take Nokia as an example. The company had a sizeable chunk of the mobile market some years ago. However, they lost their spot because they were not paying attention to what their competitors were doing.
Your business is not growing. Another sign that your focus is off is that your business is not growing...or more obviously, that you're shrinking. That is, your company's revenue, size, and market share are not seeing any significant growth changes or are seeing consistent changes in the negative direction. There are many reasons why these may be happening. For instance, it could be that your target market is shrinking, or your competitors are doing a better job meeting your customers' needs. Whatever it is, you need to return to the drawing table and redefine your business focus.
You're not making money. This is very straightforward. The aim of any business is to make money in the form of profit. So, if your business is not making money (profit), you need to change your focus. It's a sign that you need to make significant changes. You may want to change your pricing, or you may need to find a more innovative way to market your product or service.
If you're seeing any of these signs, it's time to take a hard look at your business and see if it's time to pivot. Of course, pivoting can be scary and demanding in terms of time and resources. However, it can be the critical difference between success and failure.
You don’t have to go at it alone. There are many coaches and mentors that can help you so you can maintain confidence in your moves. At EVOC we are constantly working with our clients through critical changes and shifts. In fact, we look forward to them. Growth requires change. And great business leaders are the ones who INITIATE CHANGE. It’s your secret weapon to staying in the lead of your business and not letting your business lead you.
Tips for Pivoting Successfully
Considering how challenging pivoting can be, here are some tips that can help you do it successfully:
Do your research. Before you make any decisions, take some time to research the market and understand what is going on. You should ask yourself important questions such as the following:
Who are our best customers?
What is the number one problem or challenge our best customers face?
What are we offering at the moment?
How well does that satisfy the biggest problem or challenge?
What are our competitors doing?
How can we make it easier for our customers to succeed?
Be clear about your goals. You need to have a clear F.O.C.U.S. plan in mind before you start pivoting. This will help you stay focused and avoid taking up unnecessary tasks. It will also help you measure success at the end of the day. To define your goals, you want to ask important questions like the following:
What do we hope to achieve by pivoting?
Are we reaching a new target market?
Are we offering a new product or service?
Be prepared to make changes. Pivoting means making changes to your business. This could mean changing your product or service, your pricing, or your marketing strategy, and even some core processes. This is a disruptive process. Keep reminding yourself of your goals and why you’re doing it. Also keep focused on the solutions you’re providing for your clients. You’re working to make their lives, business easier or better. It will be with it.
Be patient and trust your change process . Pivoting takes time and likely will get messy before it gets better. You won’t see the results overnight. So, stay patient, hold your focus, and smile through the process.
Pivoting can be daunting, but it can be the difference between success and failure. If you're seeing signs that your business needs to change, don't be afraid to pivot. With careful planning and execution, you can successfully pivot your business and achieve your goals.