Why Your Business Needs to Pivot
Career Reinvention Series #2
COVID isn’t going away. It’s here to stay for a long, long time.
Conventional wisdom, as preached by epidemiologists and the powers that be, have us believe that once we have created effective vaccines to counter the virus that COVID will go away, and our lives will return to the normal we used to know.
Even after vaccines are readily available the virus spread will not be totally contained. Life will not return to the old normal. Instead, we will have to recognize and accept that social-distancing, remote working and other behavioral changes are becoming permanent features of the new normal. As such, it is imperative that we adapt – pivot our business models and careers to survive, and even thrive, this disruptive change.
The economic impact of COVID is like a tale of two – boom and bust – scenarios. On the one hand, companies like Amazon, Zoom and other online based platforms are thriving and will continue to thrive in the future. Their business models were ironically built for exogenous events like COVID. On the other hand, the hospitality, travel and commercial real estate sectors have been hit hard. It is companies in these latter sectors that need to pivot their business models, if they can, to adapt to the changing trends.
And the time to pivot is now.
To be sure, not every business will be able to successfully pivot its model. For example, restaurants are limited by how much they can tweak their business practices and remain profitable. Similarly, commercial real estate landlords may be limited in their ability to profitably change their models in the face of declining demand for retail and office space.
But many other businesses can and should innovate, to the extent that they can, to providing goods and services online. It’s already happening. And the tech tools and platforms exist to help businesses migrate to new ways of serving their customers.
Those who continue to hope that things will come back to how they used to be pre-COVID, unfortunately, don’t understand this seismic change and without a smart reinvention of their businesses, and careers, are doomed to fail.
Business leaders need to pivot their models. Professionals need to upgrade their skill sets to meet the workplace demands of the future. What worked in the past isn’t likely to work in the future. Hope for a return to the old normal is not a strategy.
Reimagine. Rethink. Reinvent.
Adapted from my book – Starting Over: A Practical Guide For Reinventing Your Career In Midlife
Available at Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/1735381209
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