FLUID BUSINESS PHILOSOPHY
Course correcting myself and my business
Taoism is often called The Watercourse Way.
It advocates following the flow of your life and not being in resistance to the obstacles you meet. Finding ways around, as water would flow around a rock in a stream.
Two months ago I officially launched my company.
(Actually, it’s been years in the making, but it hard launched in early January.)
I had intended to be a consultant who sometimes invented.
I developed a solid plan of action, a whole consulting philosophy, a sound methodology and process, a sales focused suite of presentations, a website, a financial model, and a customer engagement strategy.
Then I engaged the customers.
And I didn’t get the result I wanted.
My customer base all fundamentally agreed with my belief that when it comes to disruption in business, prevention is better than cure.
On that basis they invited me in for discussions and asked me to provide quotes.
And I did.
And then they went very quiet.
Here’s the psychological truth that I overlooked.
No one wants health insurance until they break a leg.
Although my C-Suite network had the budgets and the powers to employ me, they just didn’t see the immediate need.
(I know, I need to give it time, but I’m terribly impatient!)
Interestingly, the one who did have an immediate need was so deep in crisis that there was no budget to employ me.
‘We’ll pick it up with you once things improve.’ Came the ironic response.
I’m not a fan of Milton Friedman, but I agree with him when he said:
“Only a crisis — actual or perceived — produces real change. When the crisis occurs, the actions that are taken depend on the ideas lying around. And the politically impossible becomes politically inevitable.”
Think about that for a minute.
‘When the crisis occurs, the actions that are taken depend on the ideas lying around.’
The point is to have ideas lying around. Good ideas, and lots of them.
Which is the premise of my offering.
So I think the consulting work will come, but it will take a few crisis’ to hit before the phone really starts ringing.
In the meantime, I’m adapting and changing as I learn, and not being in resistance to what I find.
I’m being like water, as the teachings of Taoism (and Bruce Lee) recommend.
So rather than being a consultant who sometimes invents, I am now an inventor who sometimes consults.
And just changing that balance has had dramatic results.
But that’s a story for another article.
The moral of this story, if it isn’t already clear, is that if you’re open to changing, on the basis of what you learn, you’ll find a path to prosperity.
As any inventor worth their salt will tell you, there is always a better way.