Now more than ever, your firm’s vision and strategy are being tested. Like a rudder, your firm’s vision and strategy steers the ship in both sound and stormy weather, keeps the focus where it’s needed, and steadfastly moves your firm toward its goals. In times of crisis and uncertainty, there are many opportunities to get lost in unchartered waters. But if you have a genuinely sound vision and strategy, they shouldn’t fold under the circumstances. You might need to shift how you accomplish your strategy, but that doesn’t mean you should change course.
As you continue to address and adapt to the changing circumstances, keep in mind the following do’s and don’ts.
DON’T abandon your vision and strategy
There’s been a major shift from compliance to advisory in the profession. Times of crisis should not be a reason to abandon the advisory trajectory; rather, they’re a fantastic catalyst for action. It would be easy to throw up our arms and say, “good thing we didn’t get rid of compliance work,” but it would also be short-sighted. Just because your momentum has slowed, doesn’t mean you should jump ship. In fact, now is the time to double down.
DO initiate transformation
The opportunity exists for firms to truly transform. Firms that are going to come out ahead will continue their strategy and don’t use challenging times as an excuse to discontinue their efforts. Instead of abandoning your vision, use this time to reset and clarify your strategy. Business developers seek out and establish new strategies and tactics so they can provide long-term value. Taking a page from that book, think long and hard about how the evolving environment will inform your business practices and what you can do to initiate transformation ahead of the curve.
DON’T miss out on opportunities
Opportunity is not lost because of a crisis. In fact, it’s the perfect time to reconnect with your clients and prospects. Try reaching out to lost proposal prospects or touching base with someone you haven’t talked to since the crisis hit. How are they weathering the storm? What challenges are they navigating? What pain-points do you share, and how can you help?
Connect with clients on a personal level by going beyond answering the narrow questions of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). Instead, dive into the deep concerns your clients have about their business. Opportunities to add value will inevitably emerge from these conversations. Many businesses are feeling left behind and are not getting the attention they need; spending more time and effort on those relationships will pay dividends in 2021 and beyond.
DO foster innovation
We’re experiencing a period of forced innovation. This time has allowed us the opportunity to try things we’ve always wanted to do without much to lose. Considering a new pricing method? Defining your advisory service packages? Reaching your network through webinars? Put innovation into action now and give people the freedom to try new things. Invest in training and build out your practice areas while the opportunity exists. You’ll thank yourself later.
Have you abandoned your vision and strategy for the here and now? It’s time to re-evaluate and realize that it’s your vision and strategy that will steer the ship through the storm. If done right, you can come out on the other side to prosperous seas.