Pivot Your Business to Add Value

Stay sharp! It’s time to pivot your business.

But what does it mean to pivot your business? It’s a term that’s used so much the meaning is lost. Only, being able to pivot is nothing to laugh about. That’s because it’s important to be nimble and flexible as a company. When you are willing and prepared to pivot the right way, you ensure your business stays fresh and relevant. It’s also important to pivot at the right time.

What’s another way to say pivot?

Pivoting as a business is about reexamining your strategy. Long before you were opening doors to your customers, you were opening books, researching opportunities and building a business plan. After opening, and as time went on, some elements of operations likely changed.

Along the way you’ve learned more about your clients and customers. You’ve likely also connected with different vendors and partners, and discovered new technologies. Even if your business is strong, it is still important to revisit your original goals and practices. What’s changed? Pivot your business plans to adjust to your own growth, respond to new technologies, and encourage available opportunities.

For some businesses, an annual or even quarterly business plan review is practiced. For other businesses, the review might come three or five years down the line. Consider your industry, your finances, and where you are in the life of your business. There’s no one-size-fits-all solution. But there is a need to set a date for regular review of your business plan.

When you sit down and look back at your original plan, you may find outdated information. The necessary changes (or small tweaks) you make will help you better help your customers and staff. 

Why pivot your business in times of uncertainty?

The decision to pivot your business can feel stressful sometimes. Change is not always easy. Additionally, you might feel pressured to pivot your business because of an uncertain future or difficult outside factors. This is understandable. However, when times are tough, appropriately examining and potentially realigning your business is all the more important.

First, think about your pivot on the small scale. Not all changes have to be big or bad. Perhaps you are reacting to a new way to reach customers. Think about businesses that launched before social media. Or, consider businesses that are able to expand and open multiple locations. In either case, adjustments must be made.

Then, think about opportunities. How can you make life easier for your customers? If you are unable to welcome them to your store, is it time to launch a website and an online store? Even small businesses can and should have an online presence. In fact, many tools already exist to help all businesses transition to e-commerce.

How can you pivot your business to focus on the positive?

It might be scary to consider pivoting your business, but don’t lose focus. Take in what you already know about your organization, employees, and customers. Look to others for inspiration. This doesn’t have to be about dramatically shifting what you sell, but about looking for ways to improve and adjust.

When you stay nimble and quick, you will be able to better serve your customers, attract new followers, and, ultimately, succeed. 

For more detailed tips and bonus content, check out our how-to section for small businesses venturing into e-commerce.  You can also explore Epic’s full series on how to take your business virtual.

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