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How to Adapt to Inevitable Change Without Disrupting Your Individual Focus

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How to Adapt to Inevitable Change Without Disrupting Your Individual Focus

It’s 2020, and a new decade is just around the corner. What are you going to do about it? What changes will you make personally as well as in regards to your business? In particular, how will you deal with business trends? The challenge is to adapt to inevitable change without disrupting our individual focus. We must learn to incorporate the new in order to stay relevant without letting it derail the foundation we’ve built.

The following are some key points of consideration, suggestions, reminders, or ideas for 2020 to help you hit the ground running:

Self-Assessment

  • Are you healthier, richer, more successful, smarter, happier etc. than previous years?
  • What are your priorities and which need the most improvement?
  • What are the benefits and costs of these achievements?

From both a personal and professional perspective, I find it useful to ask the simple question: “How’m I doing?”  More specifically, are you maximizing your strengths, improving your weaknesses, and managing your inadequacies?

Risk- Assessment

  • I argue there are numerous opportunities to take more risk. For example, do something instead of nothing, explore new options, eliminate losing efforts !!!
  • How much risk can you afford?
  • Do you understand each aspect of a risk-based decision (probability of reward, amount of the reward, and the value of the reward)?
  • What are your goals in taking risk?
  • What is your comfort level with risk?

The saying, “No reward without risk,” exists for a reason. However, we must consider the costs and benefits of each risk we take. Is the amount of risk you’re taking paying off? If not, maybe it’s time to reduce or increase risk.

Education and Technology

  • Utilize education, technology, and information to make better choices.
  • Replace outdated systems of hierarchy by rewarding excellence.
  • Embrace diversity and debate.
  • Pay attention to data.
  • Focus on process, not plan.
  • Don’t forget intuition.

Embracing Change

  • Don’t just talk about change!!! Take action.
  • Financial and economic forecasts are more wrong than right, but we need to utilize them as tools to improve understanding and behavior.
  • Operations and logistics are frequently viewed as secondary functions that can be outsourced. However, in reality (as evidenced by Amazon), they present a huge opportunity for a business to become more efficient and differentiate itself.
  • Learn to balance analysis and models with creative inspiration to deal with disruptive change.
  • Don’t let emotion or bias affect you. While passion, energy, and commitment are strong determinants of success, it’s imperative that you don’t ignore reality.

The Internet and E-commerce

  • It’s here to stay. So, if you haven’t already, get on board quickly.

E-commerce represents about 20% of retail sales and is growing at a rate of roughly 20% per year. Imagine the communication, texting, searching, purchasing etc. that is instantly available almost everywhere compared to even a few years ago. The takeaway:

  • SELL ON AMAZON (or at least have a website and make your products/services available online).

Diversity

  • Consider how to mitigate demographic changes (i.e. over 50% of the population born in the U.S. is non-white).
  • Recognize that, between 1994 and 2024, the working population over the age of 55 will double from about 12% to over 24%.
  • The #metoo movement led to a cultural shift and started a much-needed dialogue about consent.
  • Know your target audience, but consider niches you may not currently be tapping into

The Rich Get Richer

  • Recognize the wealth gap and its worldwide presence. The world is creating a significant amount of new wealth, yet income disparity is increasing instead of decreasing. 1% of U.S. households have over 50% of the wealth and that number is increasing.
  • The noteworthy implication here is not the result of U.S. tax consequences, but worldwide trends. For example, the biggest impact on our economy will come from world growth—especially China and Africa.

Relax  

We need to relax more. The pace of change, uncertainty, technology, and other factors are simply causing increased stress.

  • Try exercise, yoga, entertainment, relaxing dinners etc. Just standing up, walking around, and taking some deep breaths can help to get away and clear your mind for a bit.
  • Remember simple politeness (please, thank you, how are you?). It’s easy and effective.
  • Seek new perspectives. This can be achieved by reading new material, visiting a museum, or taking a trip and experiencing different cultures.

In the end, technology will continue to advance and consumers will perpetually drive business trends. So, as a new decade unfolds, it’s your job to recognize what changes are worth adapting to and which ones are just soon-to-be forgotten 2020 New Year’s resolutions.

Related: How Do You Measure Excellence?

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