In Listen Up, Biz Leaders: It’s Time to Rethink Everything, Fortune editor and columnist Geoff Colvin reminds us about the recent fates of former industry giants such as Motorola, BlackBerry and Kodak. Colvin comments on the angst felt by many high level executives about the viability of the strategy, organization and business models of their organizations. He then recommends a self-diagnostic of three questions to see where thing stand:
- What is our core? Are we certain that our core business will hold up?
- How is today’s unprecedented environment changing our customers and their behavior? Does that mean more or less demand for what we provide?
- Is our industry being deeply restructured, and if so, how will it affect us? Are we experiencing a hiccup or an earthquake?
Every now and then the leadership of a company must raise its head, look around and make decisions that lead to change. The correct amount of change, however, depends on the situation. Sometimes a small shift of the steering wheel is enough, other times one must stop the car, get out, and look for an airplane going in the opposite direction. There is no prescribed formula. Only through rational analysis can the best courses of action be decided.
“Not every company needs to change its strategy, even in these tumultuous times. But every company needs to determine if its strategy requires an overhaul or just thoughtful tweaks.”