The phrase “business redesign” might have you quaking in your boots. After all, who wants to start all over again from scratch?
Ah. I think I can help by offering up a different definition for you to ponder.
Business redesign isn’t about tossing it all away and starting from scratch (unless you really, really want to do that).
Instead, I think of business reinvention as a process of rethinking your current business model and your own goals, and finding places that could use a redesign. Knowing why you’re reinventing your business is the first step in the process of transformation.
There are lots of places where you can rethink and transform your business: your marketing, your target audience, the services and products you sell, the way back-office administration happens, your technology, your scale (national versus local), your resource base, your business and personal goals. You can choose to remodel every single one of these items or pick the one that will give you the biggest bang for the buck.
Some business redesign stories…
One of my clients is a chiropractor and has been doing it for nearly 30 years. But as she gets older, it’s harder and harder to lift patients off the table and the work itself causes her back and shoulder pain. In addition, she feels that she would like to reach a larger audience with her message of being in conscious choice about all aspects of your life and not just following what everyone else tells you to do or think. She will take everything she’s ever learned as a chiropractor and everything she’s been studying and living for the past 30 years and create a new business where she can teach and coach.
One client of mine is taking her existing locally-based business and converting it into a virtual business that she can conduct from anywhere in the world. This frees her up to travel with her husband and continue to have a business she loves.
Another client of mine stayed in the same industry but changed his service offerings. In the past, he had offered sign design and installation to his local customers. Now he’s offering sign management on a national scale to large organizations with multiple locations throughout the USA. He’s taken all his knowledge, experience and connections and put them to work for a new, larger, and more lucrative target audience.
In all these business redesign stories you’ll see a common thread: as a small business owner, your goals, your values, your needs and your lifestyle can change. And you can redesign your business model to reflect these new dreams and move you towards the business and life you want.
You decide how, when and where to transform your business
Business redesign is what you make it. But it’s not making tiny tweaks here and there; it’s shaking up the whole business and marketing models and realigning them to your goals, values and needs.
After listening to your Online Visibility call with Ellen Britt, I got curious and started looking through your blog. Interesting that I came across this blog post — as I find myself being forced to reinvent my business right now. I was a sole proprietor for 5 years (as a writer/editor), and this past year I did a lot to uplevel my business, including hiring a coach, setting up an LLC, hiring an accountant/bookkeeper, and totally transforming the way I market myself online (just posted my first video after 5 years of being too scared to do it). I tapped into quite a bit of available credit, took advantage of low-interest rates, and now all of it is finally catching up with me.
Oddly enough, despite all the personal growth, this year has been the worst for me financially. I suppose that will be good come tax time, but for right now it’s forcing me to get really creative, really fast… on finding some way to turn things around. (My apartment lease literally expires in 4 days and I’m like, “OK, how the heck do I make this work?”) I think what needs to be transformed in my business is “the services and products” I sell, and the way I deliver them… making sure I deliver on all my promises, e.g. I’m being forced to take a good, hard look at myself for the first time in my life, really.
Sorry for rambling. 🙂 And thanks for your post, it got me thinking.
Reinvention will do that, Michelle. There are so many places in a business where you can reinvent and transform. And I’ve heard so many stories of people doing just that, whether it’s because of the economy, or simply because they want to explore their potential.
It sounds like you’re doing the right things to get your baseline in place (hiring your team, uplevelling your marketing). Congratulations on posting your first video! The first one is always the scariest…it get much easier after that. 🙂
I think you’re smart in looking at ways to transform your offerings. We get stuck in a rut saying, “This is how my industry always delivers these services or products,” or you might be thinking, “I’ll just keep offering the same services/products and wait to see if things pick up.” But times change, your audience’s needs and desires change, technology changes…and we need to take a good, hard look at our offerings…and get rid of those sacred cows, if necessary.
Best of luck to you, Michelle!
The big thing is to have a strategy but to adapt when the need be. It can be tough sometimes to make changes to your business and not let your emotions rule. Great stuff.