There are many lessons that we could learn from the leaders of the entrepreneurial revolution. History may show this movement to be comparable to the industrial revolution – far fewer people are working on a factory assembly line, and increasingly fewer people are chained to their desks from 9-5. People are taking control of their own destinies, running their own businesses or joining the “gig economy.”
This move towards more individualised working arrangements brings with it some unique challenges. People have far more choice about the type of work they do every day and with whom they do it. Most of those choices have a direct impact on their future success.
One of the key considerations for any entrepreneur is when to stop doing something that may not be working so well. Some are ruthless and change their activity as soon as the warning signs appear, and others will attempt to make small changes in the hope of altering the outcome. All of them, without fail, will “move on” as soon as a situation seems hopeless.
For those of us in permanent employment or those who have been running a company for a while, life can sometimes seem a little more sedate in comparison. Business is going well; you do make strategic changes to the way you work, but nothing as radical as the “seat-of-your-pants” entrepreneurial types. A consequence of this steady growth is that you tend to forget the benefits that drastic change can bring.
Too many businesses and individuals put up with the “status quo.” Whether this is a gradual “frog in boiling water” decline in a relationship or a gentle but terminal slide in market share, making a change can often seem like too much of a risk. The costs of not making the change are nearly always higher, and in today’s competitive market, simply standing still is no guarantee of long-term success.
Nope, if something isn’t working, consign it to the scrap heap and come up with a Plan B. Sometimes, taking a blank piece of paper is the best thing that can happen. This might be a new employee with a totally different approach. It could be a new direction for your marketing or new customer segments to approach in your sales.
You can be sure of one thing, the other parties involved will be thinking the same thing. An employee will be aware that performance has dropped and will probably be considering alternatives. Your sales managers will be grateful for the renewed impetus because they were stagnating with the same old goals. Your whole team will be delighted when you “move” with the times and implement flexible working practices.
Standing still rarely achieves much. Knowing that you have to make a change is not good enough. Making a change that is half-hearted will never have quite the same impact, and may even convince you that you shouldn’t have make the change in the first place…. No, if you are going to change something, be decisive, and make the first cut the deepest.
The quicker you move on, the quicker you will move up.