The pandemic created a “burning platform” for most if not all of us. Our lives had a specific routine, we knew what to expect and the future was planned based on conventional wisdom and our understanding of how the world, …..our world, operated.
Many people found themselves in a place and space of discomfort which created unintended consequences for their businesses and their personal lives.
We may also entertain a perspective that the aftermath of the pandemic became a catalyst for change. We needed to re-invent ourselves and the way in which we do business. We know that change for the mere sake of change is not productive, but if we can venture through this maize of uncertainty we and our businesses can potentially be in a better space.
We need to choose between:
- Our willingness to adapt for the better or
- Remain where we are whilst we are setting ourselves up for potential failure and hardship
As we embrace 2022 we need to find our “mojo”, create a new future filled with promise and opportunity.
“Where there is no vision, the people perish..” (Proverbs 29:18). Although the context of this verse is far removed from our current circumstances it does emphasize the value of having a vision for yourself and your business.
We have done well to navigate our way through and around the challenges of lockdowns and economic turmoil. Many have succumbed to the pressure of not having the means and access to cash reserves to see another day.
What are business leaders to do?
- Stand up and be counted – be a leader for your business partners, employees, suppliers, clients and the community in which you operate. Be part of the solution!
- Take ownership of your own life, your business and it`s challenges, the circumstances in which you operate and your vision of the future.
- It will necessitate you to renew your vision for the business and determine how it will impact upon the strategy of the business.
The practical realities to step up to the plate and face reality head-on
- An objective business assessment will help you to identify gaps in the structure and operations which poses the highest risk to future success
- The core value proposition of the business needs to be tested for future viability. It might need to be refreshed, expanded or even shrunk.
- This is also a time to re-evaluate the skills of your employees. We live in a brave new world where the “recipe” which worked before might not be aligned to the needs and requirements of your target market. There are also new work dynamics to be addressed. Can we work remotely, or do we need a hybrid model? How will this impact on management practices? Do we really need office space?
- A new operational contract is needed through-out the whole value chain of the industry in which we operate. We cannot assume that the modus operandi is still intact.
This brings me to our ability as business leaders to develop a business which is sustainable or future fit.
I am not referring to a business which is operationally sound, I am asking if you have built a business which will last into the next generation. It is stated that the average lifespan of a business in South Africa is 6 years.
The are 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG`s) as well as a National Development Plan (NDP) 2030. This is needed on a macro level as part of economic policy development, but can you answer the following question? “Have I identified the key elements which is unique to my business and is needed to sustain my business into the next generation?”
This is where the “rubber hits the tarmac”. It should not and is not that complicated. You can get started by engaging with a knowledgeable and objective business advisory resource to guide you through the thinking and planning process.
At Bright Future Consulting we use a facilitated sustainability conversation which focuses on 34 key areas within a business, addressing the 4 Pillars of Leadership, Functional Area Foundation, Outcomes and Measurements, and Employee Engagement. The outcome is a Corrective Action and Sustainability Report which identifies the critical areas of focus needing further work. The impact is measured by gauging the improvement in the likelihood that the sustainability of the business is improved.
A re-calculation can save the day. An objective evaluation and total rethink can set your business up for future success for generations to come.
The process starts by a single action.
Engage with Jannie Rossouw at firstname.lastname@example.org to start the journey towards business sustainability which incorporates the uniqueness of your business.