“Your choice right now? Panic. Do nothing. Or innovate, change & adapt!” – Futurist Jim Carroll
A picture from the vaults – I’m on stage in Las Vegas in late 2009, telling a story about a book that has just come out called “The Ultimate Depression Survival Guide.”
It was a book of doom and gloom!
Up there, I’m busy providing guidance to a group at a corporate event as to what they should be focused on as a new era of volatility takes hold. The story became a mainstay on stage for quite a few years after that.
My message? Don’t focus on the downside that obviously comes with an economic contraction – focus on the next set of opportunities!
It’s pretty much a certainty that a lot changed in the global economy yesterday as investors came to realize that the perfect conditions for a continued bull run are no longer there. (Hint: if you’ve been listening to me and many others, you’ll known that they haven’t been there for quite some time. )
Given the rapid pace of global economic developments that are now likely to unfold with Covad-19 and more, organizations are faced with a pretty stark choice.
10 years ago on stage, during the last downturn, I described it this way:
- Panic: make rash decisions on structure, markets, investments.
- Freeze: do nothing
- Innovate & transform: respond to rapid market change particularly with respect to strategies, structure, capabilities, markets, products, activities
The first choice will be the go-to response given the velocity of events , and it will be an unfortunate reality for some as our complex new future unfolds.
But for others, panic will truly get you nowhere.
And inaction – option 2 — is not a good choice, because markets, customers behaviour, cost inputs and just about everything else will change even faster now, and so you need to change faster.
Option 3 — continuous innovation — remains the only thing to focus on. Your overall objective should be to keep your company ahead of the game, working hard to align current strategies with fast paced economic events.
New volatility? A more uncertain future? Whatever you do, stay focused forward!
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