Have you ever noticed some people just seem to get all the luck. Picking the right stock to trade in at the right time, happening to have an umbrella before it starts raining, finding the bargain buy in amongst the rip-offs. Well, the same applies to organisations. However, rarely is luck as simple as it seems, lucky companies know the art of creating their own luck through insight and preparation.
Some things in life are just too important to leave to the roll of a dice. The success of your business definitely counts as one of these. If you aren’t looking to the future in times of calm and prosperity, to potential threats and opportunities, then you’re steering your ship blindly in the hope you’ll get lucky and ride into a golden lake. Whilst this certainly has happened in the past, a far more common repercussion of following this strategy is to ride into an iceberg. To make the golden lake option more likely, proper evaluation of the opportunities and dissecting of the threats of the following factors is essential;
- Political - Are there specific political factors which may be beneficial or detrimental which can be used to your advantage or prepared for? I.e. trade restrictions, tax laws, labour laws
- Legal - Can you foresee any new laws/regulations coming into motion which may affect your business and how you run it? If so, what can you do to pre-empt and negate the negative effects or use the positive effects to your advantage?
- Technological - Any new technologies which can be used to the companies advantage, or that may make any aspect of the companies offerings obsolete
- Social - Any trends that can be foreseen, i.e. changes in average age, career attitudes etc. How can these be pre-empted in order to use them to your advantage
- Trends - Any trends such as the popularity of specific past-times, popular T.V. shows, clothing styles etc.
Whilst some of these factors seem hard to pre-empt, companies have made millions and created strong and sustainable brand equity based upon their ability to foresee the potential and threats from the stated in their marketplace and so act and counter-act appropriately. Profitable companies are very rarely in that situation because they are lucky. They are in that situation because they have the insight to evaluate their marketplace diligently and prepare for any scenario, like a ships captain steering through calm waters preparing for any unseen obstacles ahead.