Given the challenges of 2020, it’s highly likely that during the festive season, many people spent quite a bit of time reflecting on the year and looking ahead to 2021.
Our GrowthCatalyst team certainly did
Actually, truth be told, from a business point of view there was a lot less reflecting and a lot more looking ahead with a optimistic view. A key thing we did take away from 2020 is that a lot of business owners and leaders (certainly among those we at GrowthCatalyst spoke to during the year) did a lot of head-scratching and wondering which way to turn in the face of massive and ongoing upheaval.
Not surprising in many ways....and this was the general theme that featured in our musings about 2021 - what if there was a way to stare upheaval and uncertainty in the face and say:
"bring it on...we know we can grow our business sustainably over the longer term and navigate the down times along the way"?
Wouldn't that be great?
One reason we generally tend not to think like this is that collectively, we humans don't seem to be particularly good at long term thinking. There's plenty of reasons that's the case and it's not the intention to explore them here.
Rather, the intent is to challenge you to take a different business mindset into 2021.
Why? Well, to paraphrase Einstein, if you continue to do what you've always done and expect a different outcome, that's kinda crazy... So you have to break the cycle.
Sustainable growth is key
"Sustainable" growth should feature among the top objectives for your business - if not at the very top and with the emphasis on sustainable.
These days we're too easily side-tracked by messaging from experts in many fields promising things like "instant results" and "rapid growth". Or those that use "techy" terms to make old concepts sound completely new again – you know what we mean. It's not by any means that these folks aren't great at what they do - many of them are. It's just that the whole approach encourages a mindset that becomes firmly bolted to short term outcomes.
Consider this....if you're an investor (as opposed to a speculator or trader) in companies listed on the share market, you most probably take a long term view of the prospects for those you invest in. You know and understand these companies can't just grow exponentially year after year. You also know that every now and then, at least some of the companies in your portfolio will show a negative return in the short term. But you're willing to live with that for their long-term potential.
Why, oh why, don't we have the same mindset in our own business activities - whether it's as a business owner or a senior leader with profit centre responsibilities?
So, the challenge for 2021 and beyond is to focus on sustainable growth by shifting your mindset away from one driven by short term financial outcomes to one driven by business purpose - the reason your business exists beyond making money. The graphic below illustrates the point:
Where to start?
The first step, of course, is to be able to clearly and consistently articulate your business purpose and understand how strong that purpose already is in your business. You can check out those particular questions by undertaking this quick (three-minute) Strength of Purpose Health Check.
Taking that first small step toward thinking "sustainable growth" will put you on the road to a much more productive and satisfying 2021 and beyond.
We'd welcome the opportunity to discuss your needs with you and invite you to contact us to arrange a meeting, face-to-face or virtual.
Alternatively, you can book a time for an initial discussion here.
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