Changing Business Models? You're in Good Company
When your business is new and small, you may change business models often. Of course, this ends after you grow and become established. Not so fast. Organizations of any size can change their business model. Organiztions like PayPal, Google, Facebook, Microsoft, and Tiffany & Co. just to name a few have all found it necessary to change business models. Some changes were more radical than others.
There may be good reasons to change your business model. Beating the competition, what you have just isn’t working, trends, and the fickle market have changed are some reasons it might be necessary to change your business model. Other times, it might be a decision to cut losses for one business unit that’s dragging down revenues and sell it off. One organization simply doesn’t have the qualified staff to run a division that’s lipping along right now. You may think it an easy solution to just hire a staff, but they are in an area of the country that doesn’t have a good talent pool and it’s even worse for technical talent. This can pose a real problem for the growth of the organization.
These are not easy situations, but a good leader must be ready and willing to make tough calls. When you have to make a tough call, like changing your business model, here are some ideas that can help.
- Do not make such a decision alone. Your executive team, a trusted consultant, and other trusted advisors should provide input on such an important decision.
- If you take away a piece of your model, managers may clamor for the “saved” revenues, equipment, or people.
- If you add a piece to your model, resources may suffer. The new unit may be taking resources, territory, equipment, and people from other areas. Be proactive to prevent internal squabbles on this and the above bullet point.
- Maintain open communication about the change. Otherwise, the rumor mill will be way ahead of you.
The decision to change a business model is not easy, nor is it fast. Many will not be onboard with the decision. However, proper preparation, open communication, and good team work will save the day.
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