Jul 9, 2021

How You Manage Change Is a Competitive Advantage

Since the invention of the wheel, humans have been disrupting themselves. Change is a constant. And how your business deals with change can be its competitive advantage.

In Sticky Branding (the book) I used the analogy, “You could walk from Chicago to New York, but why?” Technology gives you far faster and easier ways to get there.

Technology is an accelerant. For instance, in 1900 the average travel speed in the United States was 8 miles per hour. That’s a little faster than walking. Fast forward to the 1950s, and the velocity of travel accelerated to 25 miles per hour. Fast forward again to 2000, and the rate of travel increased to 70 miles per hour.

In the span of a century, technology accelerated the rate of movement by close to nine times. That’s astonishing.

Covid did something very similar. At the start of the crisis, I saw this brilliant meme: “Who led the digital transformation of your company? a) CEO; b) CTO; c) COVID-19.”

The tools and technology to operate virtually already existed. Companies had Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and all of the collaboration tools they needed to work remotely. Covid just pushed that change a little faster.

The change Covid brought onto your business and industry can be perceived in two ways:

  1. It changed the game. We don’t want to go back.
  2. We can’t wait to return to normal.

As the world reopens the desire to “return to normal” is immense. Companies are looking forward to:

  • Having people in the office again.
  • Travel and meeting customers face-to-face.
  • Events, trade shows and conferences.

Before you jump back to the ways things used to be, focus on what has changed and challenge if going back to the old approach actually makes sense:

  • What if our team worked remotely more often?
  • What if we didn’t meet customers face-to-face?
  • What if we didn’t increase our travel budgets?

To operate in the “new normal” requires different talents and infrastructure, but it could be far more cost-effective and efficient. And you can guarantee that not all of your competitors will go back.

How you embrace and manage the change can be your company’s advantage.

Covid gave your business an opportunity to shed habits, infrastructure and mindsets that could have been slowing down your growth. You’ve been granted an opportunity to think and work differently for over a year.

As we emerge from the pandemic, what changes are you going to embrace and drive even further?

Share Your Company’s Story

Sticky Branding is launching a podcast, and we are looking for stories. Everybody loves a good comeback story. 2021 is a year of transformation, and it’s time to shift from crisis to a comeback. Would you like to share your company’s story?

The Sticky Branding Podcast focuses on CEOs and business owners of small- to mid-sized companies that are innovating and working hard to grow their brands. If you think your brand would be a fit, send us a note and ask to be on the podcast.

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