Although all the noise so far has been about large organizations collapsing like houses of cards, the economic downturn is now also affecting entrepreneurial and small businesses.
Yes, this can hurt. But small businesses have advantages in troubled times. They’re more resilient than large organizations that carry massive superstructures. They’re more agile, and so can creatively move faster away from declining areas of business and into opportunity spaces.
As a reinvention coach, I see examples of this resilience and agility regularly. In fact, I saw it long before the recession became a daily headline. Entrepreneurial businesses, especially in the early years, are always in recession mode.
Every day in a small business is a challenge, which is why creative entrepreneurs are reinventing constantly.
But that’s not always as easy as it sounds. To reinvent, you have put aside all the standard advice, the grand strategic plans, the five and ten year BHAGS (Big Hairy Audacious Goals), and concentrate on the immediate.
There’s a way to do this reinventing, which is really a matter of solving several problems. But instead of trying to solve them all at once as most entrepreneurs do, you break down the overall problem to a series of smaller problems, and tackle them one at a time.
As with any creative problem-solving method, you have to first define that single problem. Then you narrow your focus to conquering only it. If you let nothing else intrude in your thinking, you will be successful.
In a sense it’s much like taking a journey. You don’t think about the five miles you have to cover; you think about the first mile, in particularly, the first quarter-mile. Then the next one. Then the one after that, etc. While you might know your destination, you take your eyes off the horizon and work only on what’s right in front of you.
Because this is also a method of reinvention, my company Knowpreneur, is co-sponsoring a North American tour by the consulting company Silver Lining Limited. Silver Lining’s dynamic and creative young leader, Carissa Reiniger will show entrepreneurs in free seminars how to create quarterly targets that will produce quick results in the first year.
The touring seminars are being held in Staples stores in major cities. The tour is crossing Canada first and lands in my own back yard, Vancouver, April 22, where it will be offered from 6-9 pm at Staples, 1322 West Broadway, Vancouver.
Then it’s moving down to major cities in the US.
More information on the tour and the methodology can be found at Silver Lining’s website