Why do businesses fail?

Is it the economy? politics? Lack of customers?

These things affect a business, but they are not deciding factors.

The reason that businesses fail is the people behind them. Their mindsets and their ability to adapt to change.

Have a look at these 6 companies thriving in the recession.

Patience and innovation along with a creative ability to adapt to change. These are qualities that can drive a business forward in any weather.

Confucius — ‘The green reed which bends in the wind is stronger than the mighty oak which breaks in a storm.’

Confucius had a point here. We can translate this to businesses trying to weather the economic storms.

If a business is flexible and able to adapt to change, it’s more likely to pull through unscathed and growing.

The mighty (stubborn) oak tree, unwilling to bend in the storm is likely to suffer a wound from which it may never heal.

In effect, the oak tree (or business equivalent thereof) hands it’s fate to the storm. It surrenders it’s destiny and allows it’s future to be dictated by the bad weather.

So what ways can your business do well in a storm?

How it’s managed

How you run your business, your mindsets and attitude is going to impact it’s prosperity.

It’s easy to assign blame to external factors beyond our control.

That’s not to say that things like the economy and politics don’t affect businesses, they do.

But it’s our response to these things that leads to the action or inaction that paves the path before us. By changing the things we CAN control.

In the book Mindset by Carol S. Dweck, she highlights the benefits of a growth mindset over a fixed one. She highlights the dangers of a fixed mindset. CEO’s who have adopted a fixed mindset have contributed to the downfall of the company.

In contrast, a growth mindset gives the ability to weather changes in the economy and other external elements.

Peripheral, evergreen products & services

Having a layer or two of peripheral content can provide a great safety buffer for stormy times.

If your core product or service needs tweaking, you can use these things to create extra income.

Examples of peripheral content:

  • Ebooks / real books
  • Courses
  • Subscriptions to exclusive content
  • Monetising a YouTube channel (see next point)

Does your business use a blog to publish content? This can be great for providing valuable help and insights to your audience.

Provide a solution

Businesses that last provide solutions to real world problems. They recognise that while people have problems, business opportunities exist.

Monetising a YouTube channel to provide evergreen content is one way to go about this. Many businesses are using this space to generate content such as:

  • Instructional videos
  • Behind the scenes videos
  • Industry reports and opinion
  • Product testing

It can take time to build an audience on any social platform. The key is to be consistent and unique.

Don’t try to replicate exactly what you see working for others.

Acknowledge what works for them and find a way to do it better.

Don’t be afraid to try something a little different from the rest.

Analyse and act upon the data and feedback you get back.

Conclusion

How we approach a challenge will have a vast influence on the outcome.

We often forget, when faced with something uncertain that we have a choice.

A choice of how to respond.

Instinct and impulse demands we react a certain way.

But if we pause to examine the situation from all angles, we see the choice we have.

To approach and respond in a way that won’t serve us or anyone else.

Or to respond like Confucius’s green reed. Bend with the wind and come out the other end of the storm taller and stronger.

Your story, your adventure.

Make it awesome!

Let me know your thoughts in the comments.