If you’re running a business the most important thing you could possibly find out is what will happen tomorrow. Being able to see the future would be a major asset for any founder, CEO or even simply a manager of a small team. Being able to see what unexpected challenges and opportunities tomorrow would bring would allow you to make your plans today to face them and get the most out of them.
Sadly, it’s not possible to simply look into the future, but with the right data gathering philosophy, you can start to get close.
The first thing you need to do is understand the market that you’re working in. If you know what your consumers want, how much money they have to spend and what motivates them to spend it, as well as what all your competitors are doing: how much sway they have over your potential customers, and why those customers might be choosing them instead of you, you can start to anticipate what you need to do to turn those circumstances to your advantage. The more you know about those circumstances, the greater your advantage.
Gathering market intelligence is vital to help you make those important decisions, but even more important is turning the raw figures into insights: knowing the significance of what they tell you and what you need to do as a result. This is why it’s so important to work with a market research company. They have the reach to gather insights from a broad base of consumers, not merely your own customers, and the experience to convert the raw figures into actions you can take to optimise your position in future.
Resilience and Spontaneity
All the information in the world won’t help you unless you have a philosophy running right through your company that encourages people to act on it. You need clear processes for handling radical ideas to ensure people are incentivised to capitalise on the insights you’ve gathered and avoid penalising them when a plan you’ve endorsed doesn’t pan out. It’s equally important to ensure plans can be quickly but thoroughly risk assessed to make sure they’re not exposing you to the risk of losing more revenue than you can afford, and avoid negative publicity or exposure to legal consequences if they go wrong.
With structures like this in place, your company is poised to act quickly, pivoting to face challenges and turn them into opportunities and profits!