For any company to remain successful over the long run they need to be continually reinventing themselves. Kodak, for example, did not reinvent themselves in order to be the leader in the era of digital photography. The following seven principles can help you develop an atmosphere of reinvention so your business remains relevant.
Don’t Cling To The Past
Life is constantly changing. If you keep living in the past the future will pass you by. Henry Ford remained focused on the Model T and as a result, General Motors was able to gain market share and become the leader in the automotive industry. Be courageous enough to enjoy what you have while looking to the future.
Innovative companies encourage ideas. They create an environment where ideas are welcomed. They also understand that in order to generate ideas that work you must have ideas that fail. As a result, they celebrate those failed ideas because they want people to feel safe. Safe to put new ideas out there. It’s only when employees feel safe that they feel free to share ideas.
Often innovative breakthroughs come as a result of going against the status quo. Consider trying the opposite of what everyone else is doing. The standard approach in the airline industry is to have a major hub airport. From that major hub, flights branch out like spokes from the center of the wheel to various destinations.
Southwest Airlines, on the other hand, decided to take a different route. They built a point-to-point system that seems to work well for them. But it’s different. Are you willing to consider trying something different?
Take A Break From Reality
Take time to pause and imagine what could be. Instead of focusing on all the day-to-day challenges take time to dream. Imagine what could be.
Be Willing To Put Yourself Out Of Business
No, not permanently out of business. Instead, keep reinventing your business. Remember how slow the music industry was to meet the changing digital landscape? Because they were so slow they left room for new companies to emerge. Be willing to create something new that will make your current product or service obsolete. Now that takes some courage. But it can keep you in the game.
Just Say No To Limitations
It’s easy to say, that won’t work. Most new ideas have faced criticism. When the idea was presented that if doctors would wash their hands with soap and water it would reduce patient mortality they resisted. Don’t accept the limitations imposed by culture, tradition, and rituals within your industry. Have the courage to not accept the imposed limitations.
Pay Attention To The Horizon
In order to stay relevant and foster reinvention, it’s necessary to keep your eyes on the horizon. By looking as far ahead as possible you’ll be better prepared to anticipate the trends and changes in your industry.
If you don’t already have these concepts incorporated in your business don’t expect it to happen overnight. However, if you want to stay relevant over the long run you’ll want to begin instilling an atmosphere of reinvention today. Just start with one pillar and begin implementing it this month. Then next month work at implementing another one.
If you’d like a culture of reinvention in your business just take it one step at a time. Slow steady progress is better than rapid bursts of activity that aren’t sustained. Just keep working toward your goal. It’s a sure way to have a culture of reinvention.
Photo credit: For reinvention to happen we need to accept new beginnings. Thanks, Robert Lukeman.
Inspired by: The Road to Reinvention – Affiliate Link