Maybe Your Business Needs A Pivot

February 19, 2019

A general definition of pivot or pivoting is to change something or an act of turning. Taking this a step further as it relates to business might be to change a marketing strategy, pricing, supply chain, product or service offering, or strategic approach to business.

Business Is Not Static

One constant in business is change. For a startup business, this might mean that the original plan and vision is not compatible with the current economy, customer demands, suppliers, or competition. Perhaps, the appropriate research was not conducted in-depth before the business was started or internal or external factors changed soon after startup. 

For an ongoing business, maybe there has been a change in the customer base, competition, product or service demands, or newer products or services available to purchasers.

Regardless of the multitude of reasons or factors that change in a business’ environment, the business itself must be adaptable to various changes.

Change Is Opportunity

Rather than resisting change and holding onto previous strategies, approaches, procedures, etc., progressive businesses must be adaptable. Change, therefore, gives businesses opportunities that might not be available if they always just maintain the status quo. 

If a business owner is open-minded and has a forward-thinking philosophy, changing or pivoting various elements in the business can have a profound, positive effect on its long-term growth, profitability, and sustainability.

Components Of Change

There are numerous components in any business that might need changing such as: 

•    Pricing
•    Target marketing
•    Strategic approach
•    Vendors
•    Procedures
•    Employee skills
•    Supply chain
•    Products or services
•    Marketing
•    Customer service
•    Branding
•    Distribution

The list, of course, is almost endless depending on the business, industry, location, and economy.  

Pivoting: The Game Changer

Wherever the business is in its life cycle, change is inevitable. For those business owners who are reluctant to change, business stagnation is a definite possibility that may loom in the future. For business owners, however, who take an opposite approach and understand the importance of progressive change, opportunities are almost limitless.

The time for change is not at some distant time in the future. Change can and should be continuous. Minor changes can take place daily and weekly while major changes must be properly planned with scheduled execution dates. The idea is to always have some type of forward momentum in business. 

Measurement Is Important

An important element of change is measurement. If the action or change is not measured, then it is difficult if not impossible to determine if the change produced the desired outcome as intended. Sales, phone calls, marketing, customer complaints, expenses, employee turnover, new product acceptance, target marketing, etc. can all be measured. When changes are measured and work as intended, then those changes can become permanent (until changed again). If the changes did not produce intended results, then those changes can be either revised or completed eliminated.

Not All Changes Will Work

Certainly not all ideas for change in a business will be implemented nor will the changes that are implemented turn out as planned. Although every business does not need continuous change to be successful, there are a multitude of other businesses that do need change to successfully compete, grow, and prosper. An important factor is knowing what facet in a business might be changed that can produce a positive impact with the least amount of disruption and cost.

Pivoting a business can be minor or major. Minor changes can be made rather easily with a minimum of cost and effort while producing positive results. Major changes, of course, take more cost and effort as well as careful and detailed planning. If nothing is ever changed in a business, the status quo remains the same. On the other hand, an important aspect of business growth is understanding that the mere act of changing one or more elements in a business has the possibility to produce growth and increased net profits. Perhaps, now is the time to consider some type of pivot for your business.

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