It is not necessary to change. Survival is not mandatory. ~W. Edwards Deming
A rather sobering endorsement of change, but I’m sure most of us would like to think that we adapt and embrace change, when it seems appropriate. Change is a part of our lives and each of us have our own way of dealing with it. The act of building a successful business is not immune from change either.
Change can be swift or sneak up on us without notice
It happens right in front of us like the decline in daily newspaper distribution or the use of printed phone books. When is the last time you used a phone book? I tried to remember when I last used one and couldn’t. The internet has profoundly impacted both traditions, and long term viability is questionable.
Do we really embrace change or do we tolerate it?
In terms of buying styles, recent research tells us that 53% of the population has a buying style that is averse to change and will resist if not approached in the right way. In the past few years, the public has become very adept at prioritizing expenditures, regardless of the product or service. If the expense is necessary they spend (most of the time) and if they can wait, the public generally will.
That’s my competition?
Your business is now competing with the movie theater, the grocery store, the car dealership, and the next vacation. Whether we like it or not, we are selling – and don’t forget that 53% of the population doesn’t adapt well to change. Change impacts every aspect of our lives.
Strategies that were new, popular, and effective fifteen, ten, even five years ago may not be nearly as effective today, because we have to connect on a new level with the customer. We have to sell them on why our products or services are important and why we are the right one to deliver them. We have to find out where our perfect customers are and go there to communicate.
Making change work for you
Change affects the building of a successful business and the way we manage the customer experience:
- What new technology have you incorporated in the last year or two?
- What new technology are you considering?
- How many marketing strategies do you have in place to generate the new customers that are right for your business?
- Do I need a website and will it really do anything for me?
Be honest with yourself – Right now, how do you feel about change?
Is it a little scary or maybe a lot? How about some good news to create a new perspective about change? Change can be the catalyst for new customers, new growth, and more personal satisfaction from your business. I’m one of those 53% and I understand the reluctance to change, but I am making my peace with change and have discovered some ideas that actually help me embrace change:
Learn to recognize when change is locking you down
It’s that simple. When we focus on recognizing that the idea of change is uncomfortable, scary, unpredictable, or whatever we may be feeling, we can then deal with it on an intellectual level. Once we label it, we can work with it.
Analyze the change to see if it’s right for you
Not all change is good for you. Again, once you have identified the change you’re struggling with, you can analyze it to determine if it will benefit you.
Don’t do it alone
I had to learn this the hard way by running into a few brick walls. You don’t have to analyze and navigate change by yourself. Hire a coach, join a mastermind group, or find a mentor. A single perspective can be a dangerous thing if it’s the only one you have.
Tap your creativity
Ok, I can hear most of your responses now, “But I’m not creative.” Sorry, I don’t believe that. Follow the three ideas above and you are on your way to creating new thoughts about the change your dealing with, then there is one more action to make yourself a creativity machine. Know yourself and that means discover your talents and strengths. When you do, you tap into your brains neural pathways that will give you your best chance for new thoughts, ideas, inspiration, and confidence. You may even have more fun.
Change can be a barrier or it can be a catalyst for positive growth
We are all free to make that choice. What change are you dealing with right now? I’d like to hear from you.