How Will Your Business Respond to the Challenge of Change?
by Bob Leduc
Copyright 2000 By Bob Leduc
Most new business owners expect to devote a lot of time and
effort to getting their business established. Then, they
plan to relax as the business "runs itself" and continues to
grow. This was an achievable goal in the past. It isn't
today. Aggressive, innovative competitors and rapidly
changing technology make it impossible to establish a system
today that will automatically meet all future challenges.
Develop a "change is normal" attitude. Realize you're never
going to reach the point where you know your business so
well you can stop learning. Just when you think you've
mastered the operation of your business something will
change and disrupt your growth.
Make it a habit to look for changes that may be a developing
trend. Then try to determine how this trend may impact the
growth of your business. You can develop the best solution
to a problem when you catch it early and take your time to
carefully work out your response. There's nothing more
difficult than trying to make good long term business
decisions at the same time you're trying to rescue rapidly
#1. TAKE DEFENSIVE ACTION IN ADVANCE -- DIVERSIFY
Diversification is your best defense against the impact of
change. This applies in 2 major areas:
* The products and/or services you offer
* Your marketing activities
The primary reason you want to offer a variety of related
products or services to your customers is to maximize your
income. But there's a second reason. Changing market
conditions or an aggressive competitor can cause sales for a
product or service to decline, often suddenly. The impact
won't be devastating if a variety of other products and
services continue to produce business for you.
The same applies to your marketing. You'll reach more
prospects and generate more sales by using a variety of
marketing methods instead of just one or two. But it also
protects you from suddenly losing a substantial volume of
business because one of your marketing methods stopped
TIP: Keep looking for and testing new marketing tools and
old ones you haven't tried yet.
#2. LOOK FOR OPPORTUNITY HIDDEN IN CHANGE
The challenge of change often forces you do discover a
hidden opportunity you can exploit to gain more business. I
recently spoke with the owner of a sporting goods store near
a fast growing city in the Southeast. 2 years ago a large
retail chain started building a new superstore nearby. The
store included a large sporting goods department. Jeff
wasn't going to be able to compete with their prices and
stay in business.
Instead he set up a used sporting equipment section in his
store and started advertising to buy and sell used
equipment. Today most of Jeff's income is generated by sales
of used equipment. His total income has almost doubled and
he's even planning to expand his used equipment business to
the Internet. It's an opportunity Jeff wouldn't have
recognized without the challenge of competition from that
The biggest challenge to business success today is change.
Develop the habit of looking for the early signs that
something is changing and confront it before you're losing
business. Take defensive action against the impact of change
by diversifying the number of products and/or services you
offer and using a variety of different marketing methods.
When you decide how to respond to a challenge, look for a
hidden opportunity to increase business. You may find a
source of additional sales and profits you previously
Bob Leduc retired from a 30 year career of recruiting sales
personnel and developing sales leads. He is now a Sales
Consultant. Bob recently wrote a manual for small business
owners titled "How to Build Your Small Business Fast With
Simple Postcards" and several other publications to help
small businesses grow and prosper. For more information...
Email: BobLeduc@aol.com Subject: "Postcards".
Phone: (702) 658-1707 (After 10 AM Pacific time)
Or write: Bob Leduc, PO Box 33628, Las Vegas, NV 89133
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