Few industries escape technological disruption. The rapid pace of technological change allows savvy businesses to work smarter, create real differentiation in a crowded ‘me too’ market place, and continually reinvent themselves.
Just like the singer, Madonna.
Our business has just completed a complete restructure. Faced with the choice of evolving (a dinosaur-paced change), re-engineering what we already had, or re-inventing ourselves fresh – we chose re-invention.
Sometimes it is better to rip the band-aid off fast. It hurts a lot for a short period, and then you are over it.
90 days – long enough to get big things done
Someone once said “90 days is a long enough time to get big things done, but short enough to be in a hurry”. We concur.
In the space of just 90 days we have created a new business model, a new brand (Q2) and brand promise, built a new website, fitted out and moved business premises, sold our previous business premises, gone paperless (at last!), created and installed a new CRM and document management system, developed new strategic alliances, and dealt with all the necessary evils of starting a new business (insurances, professional memberships, IRD, accounting systems, employment and supplier/customer contracts).
Weekends were spent clearing decades of accumulated ‘work stuff’, and we are now experiencing the benefits of lightness!
Our new business model allows the Q2 team to work remotely, while our new Q2 HQ uses technology to facilitate collaboration (between clients and our team) which is one of our shared Q2 values.
We discovered and used software, apps, various outsource platforms and suppliers for the first time. It has been a steep learning curve – exciting, exhilarating, energizing and, at times, exhausting. We were in a hurry with a tight deadline.
At Q2 we still have lots more to do – the inevitable fine tuning, further systems and services development, ongoing training and learning. But we are fully engaged, proud of what we have accomplished in the space of just 90 days, and excited about the future. It’s a good place to be.
Time to take stock?
Strategically, all established businesses should take stock from time to time.
- Are you where you want to be?
- Are you at the front of the pack, somewhere in the crowded middle, or falling behind?
- Are your sales and profits improving fast enough?
- Is it time to evolve, re-engineer what you already have, or be bold and reinvent the business? (Not necessarily a total re-invention, as we have just done).
- Is your business purpose and vision still fresh and valid?
- Is your business model still appropriate?
- Has your target market changed and are you still meeting their needs and wants?
- What are the competition doing?
- Are you using technology and systems effectively?
- Are your team engaged, the right fit and with the right skill sets for where you want to take the business?
- What needs to change – by how much and by when?
Use a change agent
Having an experienced and independent business person facilitate the strategic thinking process and challenge the status quo can be valuable, perhaps even critical. After all, you don’t know what you don’t know and often our thinking gets repetitive, tired and stale.