Upside-Down Thinking by Patric Fransko
by Patric Fransko
June 22nd, 2016

What’s on the Horizon?

I’m writing this on the first day of summer, the longest day of the year. I hope thus far you’re having a profitable year and working hard to keep up with all the business coming your way. During this busy time, it’s important to still look ahead at what’s happening on the business front. While things are great right now, you could be headed for a pitfall during the slow season. Here are three things to get in the habit of doing to make sure that your company is anticipating the future and preparing for it.

In business, it's important to always look what's on the horizon.

In business, it’s important to always look what’s on the horizon.

  1. Look for Patterns

Some patterns might be obvious. For example, most of your businesses are seasonal and have consistent busy and slow periods. Other patterns might be more subtle. Pay attention to what’s happening and determine what happened the last time similar circumstances existed. We’re in the midst of an election year. How did your business do heading into late summer and fall during the last Presidential election? Thinking about patterns and how they often repeat can help you anticipate what the coming months may look like and plan for them.

  1. Identify Disruptive Events

Many times change happens without notice as a result of a disruptive event. While these things are very hard to predict, sometimes there have signs. Watch the news and understand how certain events might impact your business. An example might be news of an algorithm change at Google, Facebook, Instagram or another platform on which you are active. While you may not know the extent that event could impact your business, it’d be wise to start researching.
I recently spoke to a business that built a tremendous following and subsequent business on Instagram. The latest Instagram algorithm change made it much harder for them to reach their core client base and they saw their business drop nearly 50 percent overnight! Don’t let this be you. Watch for potential disruptive events and prepare for them.

  1. Try New Things

As new platforms and technologies evolve, you need to take steps to understand them and see how they might integrate into your business. Not all of these new things will be relevant, but you can’t assume that what is working for you now will work forever. I suggest dedicating 15 percent of your business strategy time and budget to continually trying new things that seem to be a good fit. If you do this, you’ll always be learning what’s coming and be able to identify the winners early on—and beat the competition to it.

I hope this article is just the encouragement you need to implement these habits and look to the business horizon. Make sure that you’re prepared for what the future might bring. The one consistent thing you can count on is that things will always change. Accept it and embrace it—your business will be better as a result.

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