This is a tale of missed opportunity. It features an emerging trend, an industry struggling to grow and short-term decision making.
In March 2017, we picked up chatter about a concept that we thought would interest the insurance industry. We interviewed the UCLA Anderson Professor, Hal Hershfield, who had invented and developed the idea, and he clearly thought so too. Professor Hershfield was generous in describing his vision, his ambition and the benefit that he envisaged for consumers.
The idea? It’s a piece of technology that takes an image of a person’s face and modifies it digitally to represent that same person in the future, maybe in 20, 30 or 40 years’ time.
Professor Hershfield’s research showed that, when confronted by themselves in an older, more vulnerable state, people are inclined to make different investment decisions.
We’re all very aware of our own inclination to take a reward in the short-term over waiting for a bigger one later. This concept, hyperbolic discounting, is widely studied. In times of recession, shoppers buy more chocolate and small cosmetics purchases, rather than go without completely when they can’t afford to buy a car or have a holiday.
So, the thinking behind Professor Hershfield’s concept is well-supported and evidence-based.
Hershfield’s believable representations of an older ‘you’ raise the question of what the results of your investment decisions might be. Recent studies of Generation Z revealed the consequences of these people having been born into a world of uncertainty: peak water, war, terrorism, global ecology choked on plastic, and other significant factors leave young people making very short-term decisions on the basis that the future is not guaranteed.
There are a few industries that need an injection of ‘invest for tomorrow’, one is insurance. We took Hershfield’s idea to a well-known UK insurance brand. We explained the concept, but only briefly, because they were too busy to look at new ideas. Too busy doing business and making money – and when you’re selling the future, that’s a hard argument to win.
The result was that they didn’t get the low-down on emerging technology, and Professor Hal didn’t get a new customer. Two years have passed without their customers having the benefits of that technology, and any potential competitive insulation has evaporated. Hal Hershfield’s invention is having a significant impact on those consumers with access to it. Insurance companies are turning on to the idea.
Our commitment to you
room44 is committed to continuing to bring you new insights. The value of searching for trends and seeking competitive advantage is crucial to the sustainability of business. Thanks to our constant exposure to emerging trends and innovations, we recognise unique opportunities in ideas that, at first, might seem disconnected.
Do get in touch. I promise a conversation will get you thinking differently.
This is where we arrange to talk. Click here to book time.
This is how we train teams. Download the prospectus here.
Future thinking. Future-proofing. It’s what we do.
Look through your LinkedIn feed any day of any week and you’ll find a discussion about homeworking. An enlightened manager will be lauded as a visionary for letting a team work from home for some of the week, and somewhere in the thread there’ll be a comment and the word ‘trust’ will come up.
Managers love discussing how much they can trust people who need to work even when they aren’t being watched. To me, this creates a picture in my head of a workhouse or a typing-pool: rows of people, head down and beavering away in silence. Throw an unused ping-pong table into the picture and you’ve got a modern-era open plan office.
Ask any field sales person what it feels like to be trusted to work from home and they’ll look you in the eye to see if your pupils are dilated. No-one doubts these guys do the work.
Companies know that people are motivated to work, to have purpose, to feel useful and to contribute value. But they still struggle to let them work from flexible locations, at flexible times.
They say, ‘Oh, we need to know when you’re available so you can interact.’ But staff know that too and if they need to be at a meeting or exchange ideas some other way, they’ll do it. There’s a strong body of evidence to support this theory: it’s called self-employment.
Companies today send representatives to networking meetings across the globe. At every gathering, the same complaints ring out: ‘there’s a chronic skills shortage,’ ‘we just can’t get qualified staff.’
No shit – really?
What – after decades of squeezing people into organisational structures that glorify the top end of the hierarchy, they’ve decided they’d rather work from home. Why do we wonder why they’d rather work with each other and without the need for an HR policy to manage corporate discrimination of various kinds?
And now they won’t come and work for a company? Go figure!
Let’s not blame it all on companies though. Governments have played their part. Layer in tax on benefits and take away vocational skills training from schools and it’s no surprise that kids aren’t flocking to be engineers, joiners or have an interest in manual skills. Television has done more to attract young people into cooking and the catering trade than high school learning options.
Fail to train kids in coding and digital skills, and they’ll go and learn ‘clean’ skills themselves from YouTube. Institutions like the Open University are struggling to find a new way forward when the whole world can learn to expert level without ever signing up to a course. Ironically, bricks and mortar universities have stolen a share of the market the OU used to dominate, simply by seeing that ‘digital’ and ‘distance’ are easy ways of encouraging people to join their course instead.
But I can hear you ask, isn’t that homeworking? Yup. Young and old working away to achieve a degree from a position of self-motivation. I wonder where that’ll fit into the workplace?
Written while working from home, 06.44, 23rd April, 2019.
Future thinking. Future-proofing. It’s what we do.
Not being able to anticipate change is a common problem in companies where financial and sales targets rule.
It’s really easy for the CFO to kill an idea, a conjecture or to argue a trend because the data won’t support a forecast. It can’t. Data is historical. But that’s why the CFO doesn’t work in New Product Development or Innovation.
Convert your CFO from an Analyst to a Visionary
You can help them with this. Ask them what they’ve learnt anytime in the last five years. What they do differently now that they didn’t do in 2015/ 16/ 17.
Remind them of the new piece of ‘efficiency’ software they invested in, of the new reporting system (Xero, Sage…), of the project management platform (Trello, Slack, Asana…) or of the savings that come from a Lean initiative.
All of these ideas were new, untried, unproven and a risk, once. Now they’re normal, standard, common practise.
You’ve got a fuzzy front end
Looking back we have absolute clarity. Looking forward, it’s harder for us all to see the same opportunity. The future is a bit fuzzy. The answer is to know what you will be doing because you have applied a process that uses logic, creativity, analysis and imagination.
room44 has a test for this. It’s called our CRiTT Test. We compare ideas across four metrics and the ratings make it obvious which ones can be delivered now, next and later.
Instant ROI from an innovation project that can be run in a day.
Let’s have a chat about how this can be a part of your plan for 2019/20. Book time here or e-mail me on email@example.com
[button link=”https://room44.co.uk/innovation-strategy/critt-test/” type=”big” color=”red”] Innovation concept test[/button]
For more on this subject, read this blog called ‘What is the life expectancy of your company?‘
To stay relevant to your customers over the next couple of years you’ll need to be aware of mega trends: the very biggest macro factors.
Mega trends are those irreversible, slow-to-grow changes that we tend not to recognise as quickly as we might. It’s a bit like seeing a child (puppy, kitten) after a period of time: you notice their growth much more than if you see them every day.
Who do mega trends affect?
Mega trends affect us all. They offer opportunity and threat to business in equal measure. The opportunities presented by mega trends are visible to companies who actively look for ideas to grow. The threats that mega trends present are also clear to companies looking for ideas to grow. The message is this – if you’re not looking at trends, you aren’t seeing either growth opportunity or risk of disruption.
Here in the UK many brands, especially SMEs, are wrapped up in Brexit, and it’s become really easy not to look too far into the future. While Brexit is definitely a macro factor, it’s also been difficult to plan for.
True mega trends are usually easier to read than Brexit, and definitely more likely to open up an opportunity. These are some mega trends you might like to take a look at…
The sharing economy – this may be a hard one to get to grips with if you sell consumer products. As things are developing, your newest customers are making fewer capital purchases – but there are two sides to this.
If you sell sofas, you can rent out sofas. If you sell bikes, hire out bikes. The transition to a subscription model is not hard unless you just don’t see the need.
Personal Mobility – while governments around the world are pumping billions into the electrification of cars, there is an undercurrent of radical change that still has a long way to go.
Not only are cars and other vehicles subject to changes in fuel systems, with all the knock-on impact that will have on the automotive supply chain, but even this emerging market is under pressure from the sharing economy. This trend is going to run and run, and electricity won’t be the only fuel solution explored. This blog talks about this more:
Emotional intelligence – Human Resource departments are great at building systems to recruit team members who ‘fit’ with each other.
They have known for decades that IQ isn’t the only measure of probable effectiveness. Emotional Quotient (EQ) is now better understood and it’s being managed and exploited. EQ describes the way you monitor your emotions and the emotions of your colleagues, as well as how customers react in response to your brand messages. EQ extends through your recruitment, staff management and how you are able to manage consumer loyalty.
To build a sustainable brand position, your launch planning must be part of the innovation process and persona development at the earliest possible time.
The room44 Innovation Process takes EQ into account. Let’s talk about this complex part of your plan. You can book some time here to talk.
Ages of population – here’s how the ages of the various generations are described.
Your customer personas need to anticipate how the ages of your shoppers are shifting. It’s thought that 75% of the workforce in 2025 could be Millennials.
People who sit in Gen Z and Alpha will live well beyond 100 and have plenty of time for several discrete careers. What does this mean? Well, one theory is that Gen Zs are already approaching an age when their first business sectors are changing enough that they need to retrain.
Law – the legal systems we abide by have been developed over hundreds of years. Prevailing laws are the compound product of ideas and reactions to societal developments that have taken place over time.
History tells us that legislators are slow to evolve laws to meet a new situation, and yet the forecasted rate of change in many areas of our lives means that the legal system must accelerate to keep up. Laws rely on precedent to direct us, but technology is applying pressure here. Financial management, online business, digital fraud, autonomous vehicles, geographic and geo-fenced boundaries, artificial and human intelligence are a few examples of the areas where the law is evolving, but may need to anticipate what’s coming rather than react to what has happened.
These mega trends are just some of those that sit on the horizon. They’re already in play and will cascade to affect your customers’ choices, your brand positioning and your relationship with your buyers.
room44 watches trends, builds systems for our clients to watch for themselves and trains teams to innovate by being aware and informed about the way their markets are changing – before the change arrives.
We can help with that. Call us to find out more: +44 208 144 9800 or click through to see how our outside insight service works. Don’t worry, there isn’t another form to fill in.
Future thinking. Future-proofing. It’s what we do.
Faced with a journey, you’ve got choices: plan the route or start walking (driving, cycling – whatever you choose).
Planning feels logical. Get the map out, plug coordinates into a sat nav and see how long it takes. Your route to a final destination, plotted via a set of well-worn pathways.
The expected outcome is clear.
So, what about the journey to a new destination that hasn’t been visited before, by anyone, ever?
Things aren’t as clear now. It’s harder to know how to get there. You might not even be sure where ‘there’ is. How do you take the first step?
This is the problem that an innovation process tackles.
Now we’re talking about a different set of variables: who is your target customer and what will they be struggling with at the end of your product development process? With technology and competition developing at current rates, you can’t assume that today’s customer will be the same in six months’ time.
This is why we look at time horizons and consider new trends – not data. Data is historical. Trends are emerging. There’s a major difference in their usefulness when it comes to plotting your customer need as it will develop – not as it did.
Think of it like this: over the course of, say, five years, lots of products will fade from the market. Trends like electric vehicles are growing. Consequently, the bits and bobs that sit under the bonnet of your family saloon won’t be needed in the numbers they are today. Stuff like carburettors, exhaust pipes and so on.
If you make carburettors or exhaust pipes, you have time to develop a new strategy – but not much. Deciding what you’ll do when exhaust pipes aren’t needed; raising finance; buying and receiving new machines; becoming a player in a new product segment…all these things take time.
A five-year window isn’t very big at all, and by the time you make it to market with a new idea that meets a need today, that need will have moved on.
This quote from the World Economic Forum says it all
- The right strategic vision is critical– in addition to anticipating what your customers are going to want, you need to define the depth and scope of the changes and redesign your internal processes and broader ecosystem.
- Execution is the hardest part of transformation– more than half of all companies undertaking transformation will fail to achieve their desired outcomes. One of the most common stumbling blocks is underestimating the operating model refinements that will be required across the organisation.
- Beware leaders who are clinging to past or current successes – this is the hypnotic siren song of the status quo. Transformation needs to be a continuous, never-ending process rather than a distinct ‘event’.
The article’s called “What is the life expectancy of your company?” It’s a good question.
room44 has a process for helping you succeed in a changing market place. It’s called the Programme for Changemakers. Click below for details.
[button link=”http://room44-co-uk-4918163.hs-sites.com/programme” type=”big” color=”green” newwindow=”yes”] Programme for Changemakers[/button]
Presenting at a trade event gets the creative juices flowing. Sometimes this can be a good thing. Sometimes it leads to other ideas.
This is what happened this week. I was invited to present a short deck at Pro2Pac at London’s Excel. Appended to the annual IFE show, Pro2pac is a mash-up of machine and packaging manufacturers alongside smaller brands of, sometimes, niche and regional food products. It brings together a compelling mix of people and ideas.
My agenda time slot was titled ‘identifying and addressing consumer needs through intelligent design’.
My abstract read like this: Trends across consumer behaviour strongly signal that plastic packaging has lost its place in the hearts and minds of shoppers.
As Generation Z becomes more of a force in the buying community, companies grown and built on the belief that plastics present the best way of shipping CPGs and Produce, over long distance and in the extended supply chain, are being challenged.
How do we break the cycle that causes consumer frustration at the apparent apathy demonstrated by the packaging industry and its perceived lack of preparedness to accept responsibility for the change that is, in some peoples’ eyes, inevitable?
Already I can feel hackles rising amongst plastic packaging producers. So here’s my point: whatever output and efficiency targets incumbent producers need to hit to make money, how ever much the packaging industry tells us that we need plastic nets around oranges or seven-element packaging to make a pot of soup look premium, or a bag around bananas, or plastic wraps around trays of mushrooms… consumers know they don’t. Retailers may prefer pre-packaged goods to make the supply chain more efficient and to manage, their definition of, food waste within the system that the packaging industry and they have created – but consumers don’t NEED it.
With this single, unavoidable ‘black elephant*’ the packaging industry is losing the hearts and minds of consumers.
During my presentation, I referenced the work that is being done in class rooms with Key Stage 1 to 3 students in schools right now. Educating children about the impact of avoidable plastic usage and even more serious environmental concepts is having an effect.
Generation Z has received this information and the recent Greta Thunberg inspired schools strikes are an illustration of a change in the wind; new consumers beginning to make their feelings felt.
Not to put too fine a point on it, there’s a sentiment building.
With industry so hung-up on Millennials as the largest shopping age group, it’s no surprise that subsequent segments aren’t front of mind. For reasons of sustainability, yours and everyone else’s, Gen. Z should be. Do you even know what age Gen.Z is?
My presentation at #Pro2pac was along these lines. As an identified trend, age-specific shifts in attitudes towards consumerism is as clear as day. It’s signalled and is being shouted from all segments of your consumer audience. Resist all you like but if you don’t adapt and change, your business will feel it.
I’ve drawn a quick infographic that sums up this concept and you can get it here. It’s called ‘Who will you sell your packaging to?’ Have a look. I’m interested to talk to you if you agree with this sentiment. I’m more interested to speak to you if you don’t.
To talk about how we can help you re-envisage your product design strategy, we’re a call away and this link will drop time into my diary. Let’s talk soon.
*The Black Elephant is combination of boardroom clichés: the Elephant in the Room, the thing which everyone knows is important, but no one will talk about; and the Black Swan, the hard-to-predict event which is outside the realm of normal expectations, but has enormous impact.
A few years ago, probably 2012 or so, there was a right old kerfuffle when some bright spark fitted a skateboard with a petrol engine, and the craze for powered personal mobility took off. For the first time, a semi-viable alternative to a bike was available and early adopters took to the idea as a commuting option. It didn’t last. The UK government decided the idea was silly and stories started to appear in the red tops saying that users weren’t contributing to the road fund license in the way other road users did (ignoring cyclists, of course).
Then came mini-bikes: the scourge of common land at weekends when dads turned their kids loose on waste ground. More headlines and an occasional sad accident saw the end of another passing consumer trend and a flood of unwanted Christmas presents on eBay and Gumtree.
But things are changing. Welcome to the age of fully sanctioned, free-from-surcharge, powered mobility for everybody? eBikes have changed your journey options and given us democratised mobility for the 14 to 104 age range.
What’s changed? Technology, that’s what.
Today, the gradual realisation among road users that cars aren’t the only option for getting to work is helping a new market expand: the electric bicycle.
Where will this lead?
Increasingly difficult road conditions and congestion have seen a rise in the use of bikes as a commuting solution. Not so much that the UK has invested in significant infrastructure developments, but enough to cause a blip on retail indices. In response to Team GB’s success at the 2012 Olympics, and by Brits in high profile road races, weekend warriors have been out and bought carbon bikes that now get them to work and into triathlon and other bike-based pastimes.
The recent development of (almost) affordable electric bikes has seen the age of cyclists rise too. A realistic 40-60 mile range gives new life to older legs. The price of eBikes is still pretty high, but we can see the trend in downward prices and greater choice. Not all schoolkids will be getting an eBike for their birthday, but some might.
Why is an eBike allowed when powered skateboards weren’t? According to Electric bikes: licensing, tax and insurance “You can ride an electric bike in England, Scotland and Wales if you’re 14 or over, as long as it meets certain requirements.
These electric bikes are known as ‘electrically assisted pedal cycles’ (EAPCs). You do not need a licence to ride one and it does not need to be registered, taxed or insured.”
Say that again: sanctioned, free-from-surcharge, powered mobility for everybody?
Now, take a look around the world at what’s going on in urban centres. Powered scooters are a serious Metro alternative in many EU and US cities. Not so much in the UK, but it’s an observable thing now. eBikes are entering sectors where bikes previously didn’t get a look in: mountain biking, general leisure, shopping, commuting and so on.
In the 1970s, sixteen-year-olds used mopeds as their ticket to freedom and independence. 50cc motorbikes fitted with fold-away pedals were de rigueur. Recently, Harley Davidson released first sight of its Livewire project, originally announced in 2014, with bikes ranging from full-size Harleys through lightweight urban vehicles to eBikes. What are the chances that fold-away pedals get a look-in along the way to blur the edges between a bicycle and a motorbike?
So, what does this all mean? Democratised mobility for the 14 to 104 age segment. Less reliance on car parking. Potentially less road tax revenue. Smaller road footprint options for single occupancy vehicles. A variety of demand levels, depending on the climate. Product development in insurance. More onboard camera and security products. Changes to workwear styles and materials. Different ways of using roads, pathways. Different ways of travelling in groups such as in families. Greater demand for dedicated bike lanes and integrations across existing vehicle networks. Workplace charging facilities. Releasing space to bikes on public transport for people who travel further, but who want to use a bike as part of their journey. Rental and shared access. And the list goes on…
The striking thing about these developments is that they are happening now and will mushroom over the next 18 months. These aren’t local influences affecting notorious early-adopting cities like LA, Amsterdam or Shanghai. These are global trends that are limited only by availability of a newly feasible product and how willing you are to adopt them.
Wherever you live, your mobility options have recently shifted into a different paradigm.
You can find out what we’re doing in the personal mobility market and how the emerging trend is opening up new product opportunities by talking to us. Click here. Just like cycling, talking is free.
[button link=”https://meetings.hubspot.com/tristan28″ type=”big” newwindow=”yes”] Drop time into my diary here[/button]
Seeing it differently. Future-proofing. It’s what we do.
Innovation consultants aren’t obvious in every coffee shop. We can’t be picked out by our black uniform (architects), or that slightly dishevelled and wired look (junior doctors), or even the button-down shirted, penny loafer and blue suit-wearing business type (McKinsey). We are a relatively rare breed that sits on a stool with a quizzical look. We’re what Reid Hoffman of LinkedIn and Graylock fame calls ‘the infinite learner’.
In room44’s case, we have an internal mantra that sits at the heart of our brand essence – question everything. How did you get to where you are? Why do you still do what you do? Have you seen that trend yet? How about the macro trend sitting out in the future that promises to knock your growth plan off-course, or that looks like an opportunity to latch onto?
One of the reasons our clients work with room44 is our enquiring minds – the most central tenet of which is: who is it for?
Consumer-centricity sits at the core of our being. We don’t work to deliver ‘innovation’. We work to create a strategy that delivers products and services to let your customers experience innovation: a better experience, or a more satisfying solution to their problem.
The father of disruptive innovation, Clayton Christensen, defined it as being what creates new markets by discovering new categories of customers. In our opinion, the best place to start to disrupt is from an established market position. From this position, you have everything you need to succeed and all the tools a start-up would kill for: customers, brand presence, market penetration, shelf space, relationships, track record, trust and revenue.
In the coffee shop
When we’re in the coffee shop, we watch. When we’re at the bus stop, we watch. When we’re at the checkout, we watch, and when we aren’t watching, we’re reading or listening. There’s a good reason for this. There’s as much merit in observing people going about normal business as there is in dive into the internet. In fact, they’re interrelated. Seeing the world in action and following a line of enquiry with ‘why?’ at the heart of the matter is essential to the development of new ways to meet consumer need.
This is how we learn and how we apply an objective consumer perspective to any market segment.
To learn how an innovation consultant can help your business, you can read our guide to strategic innovation. We call it the Programme for Changemakers.
[button link=”http://room44-co-uk-4918163.hs-sites.com/programme” type=”big” newwindow=”yes”] Access The Programme for Changemakers here.[/button]
Future thinking. Future-proofing. It’s what we do.
As you get close to your end of Q1, 2019 budget presentations, one thing becomes blindingly obvious: stakeholders don’t apply logic to targets and plans. If your stakeholders are also your investors – bad luck. They’re even less likely to be sympathetic to a plan that doesn’t return them a nailed-on guarantee that they can count in cash.
We paraphrase this by stating the case more precisely, and in a way stakeholders will understand. The same two definitions apply to companies that need to innovate…
…there are two kinds of companies; those that are doing well and those that aren’t.
In both cases, the answer is to see your situation differently and give the guys with the money a reason to behave differently too. After all, doing more of the same is madness.
The misunderstanding we encounter every day is that innovation is associated with the future. It isn’t – not entirely. Innovation is about making a difference to your business fortunes now – today – to future-proof your long-term.
Re-framing the opportunity
Here’s why the confusion exists. Talking about future trends and what could happen is just the start of a process; what matters more is how you choose to use the insight you gather. If your attitude to emerging trends is to plan a course of action against an unspecified timeline, stakeholders won’t buy this.
We understand it’s hard to get your peers onside when their priority is to hit a target. That’s why you need to re-frame signals that emerge from seeing trends early. The ability to show your colleagues strong signals of change in your market and the opportunities that emerge from this insight, has real power to convince people to change their view.
See it differently
room44 interprets emerging trends and makes them meaningful for you today, linking these developments back to your current condition. We deliver immediate return on investment. We take your existing business condition, introduce a customer perspective, and work with you so that your team can learn along the way. All our projects end with an actionable short, medium and long term plan, complete with a rationale.
Example of playing long and winning short
Here’s an example of the tangible and measurable effect that thinking long to win short can have.
In two weeks, our client had established a long-range strategic endpoint that extended its immediate reach into new storage solutions for sustainably-produced electricity. We produced a roadmap of small step developments to exploit emerging technologies as the market begins to accept the concepts. More importantly, the new commercial approach shortened payment terms, previously counted in months, to a mix of payment in advance and four-week terms.
If you want to quickly find out how ‘innovation ready’ you are, click here. The best way to start is to start.
[button link=”http://room44-co-uk-4918163.hs-sites.com/innovationaudit” type=”big” newwindow=”yes”] Your innovation audit starts here[/button]
Seeing it differently. Future-proofing. It’s what we do.
Getting innovation right takes time, and the only way to start is to start.
The pace we work at is relentless. So is the pace of change: faster than ever before, and slower than we should expect. Slow is bad. If you’re slow, you aren’t keeping up – you’re losing ground, falling behind.
Fast is a complicated word. It implies alertness and responsiveness. Fast makes us feel busy: being able to respond quickly to a threat or an opportunity takes a quick mind and an agile system.
But could slow actually be preferable?
Slow is considered, thoughtful. Slow is valuable. Slow has taken time, and time costs money. If you commit to an idea that takes time to develop and get right, it has been valued highly enough to attract an investment: your investment.
Slow food is highly prized and highly priced. Go shopping, choose ingredients, consider who you’re cooking for: prepare, assemble, serve, enjoy together. These are all elements of the slow food vernacular. Most importantly, the thought that went into the gathering of people and components – the planning – is where the value is. Compare ‘slow-cooked’ with ‘fast food’: how different do those two phrases make you feel?
Slow fashion: the consideration of a customer’s need, before producing a high value item, is part of the experience. Researching, thinking through how long the thing will be of value, working out whether it could become an heirloom, judging the real worth to a buyer. Set this against the time it takes to pick up a t-shirt from a high-street chain that could last for the summer, the weekend, or even just the night.
Slow fashion also rejects exploitation; it might want to reutilise recovered materials; it thinks about what this thing could become after you’ve finished with it. It doesn’t need packaging, because you select it with help from someone who knows the story behind its manufacture. You build a relationship with the brand representative and the brand location. You learn through the experience of getting to know this brand, and you decide whether it fits with your own brand values before finally buying. When you do part with your cash, you know that this product will be part of your life for a long time, and you have decided to invest time into its care.
Slow versus fast is how we make the difference in business. Looking at the opportunities that may be open to us, thinking through our options, considering the implications of doing one thing over the other: these are valuable and time-based activities that aren’t best done quickly, reactively, or in response to a short-term threat.
The most famous overnight successes came after years of slowly learning, honing an art, practising a craft. Very little of true value happens without time being taken to work the problems out. This isn’t to say that decisions aren’t made quickly. It just means that lasting brands know what they are there to deliver and return on investment is measured in consumer delight; not just bottom line results.
Getting it right takes time, and the only way to start is to start.
You may want to make a change quickly. You may be getting closer to the time when a new idea is your only way out. If you need time, but are running out, start now. If you need to push ahead more quickly than you have time for – get help, add a different skill set, multiply the thinking.
Seeing it differently. Future-proofing. It’s what we do.