In these uncertain times I believe one of the most important questions we all need to be asking ourselves is, “What is my opportunity strategy?” My experience has shown that people are seeking, creating, or waiting for opportunity to come their way. The most successful professionals and companies articulate their opportunity strategy and then create disciplines, goals, and objectives that guide their decision making.
I invite you to consider the following three opportunity strategies. Identify the one you are currently using and ask yourself, “Is this approach the right fit based on my current reality and the direction my industry is going?”
- Seeking Opportunity – this strategy has you actively looking for opportunities that already exist but need to be serviced. To effectively execute this strategy you have to be aware of consumer and market trends, challenges in your industry, and the needs and wants of customers. Your overall goal is to evaluate different opportunities and look for the ones that fit your vision, allow you to serve in your strengths zone, and have maximum impact on the people you serve.
- Creating Opportunity – this strategy is probably the most difficult for professionals because it requires self-confidence, risk, and consistently thinking outside the box. To effectively execute this strategy you need to be able to look at the status quo approach to meeting customer needs and be able to develop something so unique and different that you revolutionize the customer experience. Think of innovations like Facebook, the iPad, and the Amazon Kindle.
- Waiting for Opportunity – this is a counter-intuitive strategy that is used when the existing opportunities in the marketplace are not a match for your vision and strengths. It requires a tremendous amount of patience and discernment. When everyone else is jumping in, your gut tells you to wait for a different of opportunity. You have to be very careful with defaulting to this strategy when there is fear, uncertainty, and fast paced change occurring in the marketplace. Don’t use this strategy as a crutch or hiding place from the reality of your situation and the need for you to possibly adapt.
Currently, I believe most of us are utilizing the seeking opportunity strategy. However, I can’t help but think the companies and professionals that go from good to great in this economy will shift from the seeking opportunity to the creating opportunity strategy. This will be achieved when people least expect it and we all will marvel at how these individuals and companies revolutionized the experience for their customers, employees, and the overall industry they serve.
Make it a great day!