Turning Around the Coming Storm
Part 2 of a series on Preparing for the Coming Economic Storm.
Times of great distress promise one thing for leaders of great resolve—great opportunity. The problem with most companies is that they have never thought strategically about the potential opportunities that are likely to arise in the imminent future.
You’ve made projections about your company’s growth trajectory, set budgets and even objectives to meet that path. But how often has your team made a list of potential opportunities that might arise in the future? How often have you created a plan around how your enterprise will identify, respond and capitalize on likely events in the future that could dramatically impact your organization?
For the vast majority of companies, conducting a thoughtful Potential Opportunity Analysis is as foreign as other typical strategic thinking exercises, such as clarifying innovation objectives or conducting in-depth interviews with prospective customers. Here are the steps your leadership team should walk through on a regular basis to ensure your organization is ready to capitalize on potential opportunities before your competition.
From a broad strategic perspective, what are the greatest potential opportunities you must consider? These are potential opportunities that haven’t happened but might, and yet they are somewhat likely and thus should at least be thought about and for which adequate preparations should be made.
List the Priority Areas for Your Business
There are myriad potential opportunities that could arise, so the first factor to consider is what are the priority areas of concern for your business. Is it growth into new markets, protection or acquisition of resources or maintaining stability and continuity? Based on your priorities, you can then begin to determine where you want to direct your attention for potential new opportunities that may arise.
Consider and Rank Potential Opportunities
Next brainstorm a list of all the likely opportunities you can conceive as potential opportunities that may affect the priority areas of the business. You may be thinking, “but we can’t predict the future!” Of course not, but what is amazing is how often most leadership teams can come up with at least some if not many of the potential opportunities that will arise in these respective areas. More importantly, the process of this planning alerts the team’s attention to a much-heightened level for these and similar opportunities, which will inevitably arise and be of value to the enterprise. Without this planning, your team will be much less likely to react to them if at all.
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