Got Entrepreneurial ADD? Strategy Can Save You!
Do you go to a trade show, listen to a podcast, or read an article, then suddenly find yourself ready to implement something new? Do you get going in one direction then get sidetracked by something new and exciting? Does your team feel like you are continually changing your mind?
If you answer yes to those questions, then you have Entrepreneurial ADD. Is that a good thing or a bad thing? I would say both. It is a good thing to be aware of trends and to look for new ideas. It is terrible if you are always going serpentine and never go in a straight line long enough to get anything done.
The Liability of New Ideas
Successful entrepreneurs are creative, open to change, always moving forward, and continuously learning. Entrepreneurs that don't eventually get stuck in a rut and can't stay ahead of the market. Being open to new ideas and new opportunities is one of an entrepreneur's greatest strengths. It can also be a significant liability.
When your team feels like your company is one great big pinball machine, they can't make good decisions. They are always exhausted. They don't know what changes to embrace and what activities to prioritize. They feel like nothing stays the same, and nothing ever gets done.
There needs to be a balance between moving ahead and serpentine. (I can't help but think of that crazy scene in The In-Laws with Peter Falk and Alan Arkan. If you have never seen it, check out the video on YouTube).
So, how do you balance the search for new ideas with staying the course? One way is to start with a strong strategy. Nail down your vision, so everyone in the company understands what it will take to get you there. Be clear about your values. Live by them and hold your team to them. Then think about your mission. Decide why you exist and keep reminding yourself.
It would be helpful to understand your market position, your ideal customer profile, and your value proposition as well. These things keep you focused on your customer to ensure that your changes are in line with their needs.
It is only natural that, as an entrepreneur, you get excited by the possibilities you see. Having a solid strategy will help you stay on track or make good decisions when it's time to pivot because your strategy will help you identify all of the things that need to change to make sure you are positioned to be successful in your pivot.
Use your strategy as your roadmap. It's OK to take detours, just be sure they won't take you too far off your charted path.
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