I absolutely loved this sign I spotted in the Bene furniture showroom this month as it summarises in two simple words a lot of what I have been talking to people about recently: primarily change and the appetite for change.
After spending the majority of the last three and a half months since starting my business talking to people within the industry, I feel most fall into one of two camps. The first is those that have taken advantage (may not quite the right word as there is no doubt this has been a very unwelcome period for business) of being slightly quieter than normal, clients and projects demanding their time a little bit less and have been taking stock. Taking stock and reflecting on where their business is, where it needs be, how it needs to adapt to reflect the current market and a changing workplace (for some even pre COVID!), thinking about how they can innovate, how they can change to serve their marketplace and target market. This attitude I love. Seeing challenging times as an opportunity is a very big reason behind me starting my own business because if I didn't I certainly wouldn't have taken that leap!
The second camp can maybe (and don't get me wrong understandably!) be said to be more risk adverse, more apprehensive, more hesitant and taking more of an emu approach with a little bit of sticking their heads in the sand. Having my own business I know that the idea of changing and investing at a time when the future is more unclear than ever is super scary, I do, I get it. But, even if there is a vaccine in the shorter term, the effects that COVID have had on the workplace and on our industry are here to stay and we must, without wanting to use too many cliches, adapt or die. Personally, my business bank account is not exactly overflowing (it's only month 4 Sally I have to keep telling myself!), however I have already been investing: investing in training, investing in courses, investing in ideas - to both allow me to have multiple income streams and allow me to adapt in this constantly changing world.
A lot of the change can be in HOW we do business: how we engage with our customers, how we do what we do, how do we go about retaining clients, how do we appeal to different markets like dealers, how we do do things as simple as track projects or analyse our numbers. If you would like to chat more about how to improve what you are already doing and how to make some time and cost efficiencies in your business I welcome you to connect or send me a message, because really, well - the time has never been better for change.
Sally Rice is the Founder and Managing Director of S Rice Consultancy who offer companies in the commercial interiors industry advice on the operational areas of business with the aim of helping them gain more time and cost efficiencies, maintain sustainable growth and ultimately improve their bottom line.
Follow their LinkedIn page at https://www.linkedin.com/company/sriceconsultancy