Hello Strategy Studio. CEOWorld Magazine asked me to share my tips for navigating and maximizing disruptions.
What are the five most important things a business leader should do to pivot and stay relevant in the face of disruptive technologies? Please share a story or an example for each.
- Adopt a customer mindset. It isn’t enough to understand your customer or their journey. Embrace their head and heart and consider choice from their perspective. For example, a family with young children looking for something fun might consider their local children’s museum or park or new offerings from around the globe.
- Recognize that competition is morphing all the time. Your competitors aren’t bound by industry or market. To my example above, a children’s museum competes with parks, recreation centers, streaming services, and a host of other offerings that families might enjoy.
- Look for the shapers and drivers. I’m referring to the forces and trends with the power to shape your customer’s choices and drive their decisions. For example, will the K-shaped economic recovery go or shape your future? It depends on your mission and your customer. If you are a community college and your students cannot afford to attend college at all, then the economy is a driver. If your customer is a knowledge worker able to work from home, the economy is likely shaping their decisions but may not determine them with the same force.
- Embrace differentiation. Our companies need to stand out and stand for something. When a company is differentiated, it pursues a strategy based on being distinctive. Think of Patagonia or Apple, for example.
- Remain loyal to your brand. Today’s consumer expects to engage with brands that authentically deliver. That’s true across industries and verticals. Increasingly we see companies double down on brand and strategic differentiation as they find ways to solve the significant issues of our day. Cotopaxi, an outdoor company, is taking bold steps to address global warming throughout its supply chain and retail operation.