Shift and Succeed: Harnessing Adaptability in Business

Hello there! 

Picture yourself as the captain of a nimble sailboat, not an enormous cargo ship. Why? Because you’re a small business owner, and that’s one of the best things about it! You’re agile, you can pivot with ease, and you’re not weighed down by the bureaucracy of a massive organization. 

Just imagine it – you can literally change direction on a dime.

Remember COVID? Yeah, that major curveball the world threw at us not long ago. It taught us some hard lessons, especially about the importance of adaptability in business. Let’s take our shoe store, Shoetopia, as an example. We were forced to close for 22 weeks during COVID, which was anything but easy. But guess what? We adapted. We made the difficult decision to lay off a few team members, moved to a more online presence, and revamped our online services for easy curbside pick-up. All these changes were made relatively quickly because, like a small sailboat, we’re adaptable.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying everyone loves change. In fact, many people dread it. But remember this: it’s not about changing for change’s sake. It’s about adapting when change is necessary to improve your service and stay competitive.

What was popular or successful five years ago may not be anymore. So, you need to be ready to adapt. Stay abreast of industry developments, network with other professionals, and pivot your business strategy when needed. That’s the only way to stay ahead of the game.

Running a business is not just about the day-to-day operations. You need to spend time thinking about the future. Reflect on your business strategy and areas of improvement. Maintain a growth mindset, learn from your successes, and yes, your failures too. The key is to foster resilience in the face of change and adversity. That’s how you stay focused on your goals and maintain a positive attitude, even when things don’t go according to plan.

Now, let’s talk about a framework I like to use when thinking about adaptability. It revolves around your worries, wants, and wins. What’s keeping you up at night? What do you want from your business? And what are you currently succeeding at? These three W’s will help you think about the future of your business and devise a strategy for moving forward.

Finally, remember that adaptability is a process. It’s not just about making drastic changes. It’s about small, continuous improvements. It’s about aligning accountabilities and empowering your team. All these things will help you make the necessary shifts and changes within your business.

So, there you have it – the ninth law of moving from operator to owner in your business. It’s all about being adaptable, and more importantly, embracing change. And guess what? There’s only one more law to go. So, until next time, keep sailing, stay adaptable, and make it a great day!

This article was based on an episode of the Business Owner Breakthrough Podcast.

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