Vision Series Assignment 6 – Assess Rapid Change
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By Stan Washington
[color=#111111][size=2][font=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]In 2019, i[/font][/size][/color]f a person would have said most businesses would fall by the wayside, they would have been laughed at. At the end of that year, everything was going pretty good for many entrepreneurs. The long range plans would say “keep doing more of the same.” But 2020 happened and every plan, including contingencies, were busted. But there were some businesses that made adjustments quickly and survived. [b]Long Term Planning is a Thing of the Past[/b] In the mid 1800’s business plans were formulated to look five to ten years into the future. Technology was not much of a factor at that time and change was not as rapid as it is in the 21[sup]st[/sup] century. More than a century later, people are still writing business plans, trying to predict a rapid changing future with old methods. Rapid change needs to be part of the plan. Nimble companies think in ten week chunks. Large investments in long-term strategies are broken up into smaller components versus the large strategies of the 1800’s. Brick and mortar businesses are considering how to do things remotely [u]and[/u] at their physical location. But problems arise when businesses try to address change on their own. One company may spend an enormous amount of time and money developing a delivery system when the customers are tired of getting things delivered to them. Another may spend time developing a pick up solution when the customer wants a delivery. What can be done about this? [b]Assess the Need Every Ten Weeks[/b] Listening to the customer requires you, then business owner, to meet a lot of people. That is directly in line with GOD’s plan. While you are assessing the need of the customer, you can grow GOD’s kingdom by praying for each new person you meet. Listen to their business need and listen to their need for GOD. When you listen to your customer’s needs, you can apply your expertise to adjust what you do in your business. One thing you can count on is things will change. [b]Plan for perpetual change[/b] Pivoting to another business model is not a good practice. It sometimes takes months or years to develop stable operations worthy of customer use. When a business changes their operations, it could sometimes confuse the customer, causing them to leave. Listen to your customer and assess the need, Write down their need on a wish list and pray about the business priority. GOD is the only one who knows the future. Ask HIM for guidance. [b]Arriving to the Party Ready and On-Time [/b] Arriving fifteen minutes late did not seem like a big deal to me. Weddings tend to start late so I took my time and parked in a strategic location, thinking about my quick departure. When I got inside the church, I heard the groom say “I do.” I had already missed what the bride said and the ceremony was over. I greeted them and walked outside. My car was blocked by the wedding party. All of my assumptions about this wedding were wrong. Rapid change and wrong assumptions caught me off guard. Listening to your customer enables you to see change coming. GOD will bring the right person to you at the right time to give you the right feedback at the right moment. Remember, GOD provides the vision and when HE says “[i]For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future[/i]”[i] Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)[/i], HE means HE has already done what HE said HE will do for you. HE wants you to be ready for the plans HE has for you. How can you be ready? [b]Seek HIS Kingdom Daily[/b] Getting too lost in the business causes you to lose sight of the customer’s needs. When customer feedback is not wanted or accepted, mistakes grow in your business. Make it a practice to seek the needs of your customer and GOD will reward you. [i]But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Matthew 6:33 (NIV) [/i]GOD loves when you serve HIS creations with a heart for HIM. Next I will discuss the leadership style associated with being ready.