For weeks now, Billy Joel’s, “Don’t Go Changin,” has been playing in my head. It sure is irksome, but it’s a constant reminder of the theme of change that has come up repeatedly in my day-to-day meetups.
It is a romantic notion, as Billy meant it to be, but when it applies to business, we better think twice about not changing to please the object of our affection: the customer.
Many businesses still don’t grasp the concept of change, sticking with the “if-it-ain’t-broke-don’t-fix-it” philosophy. I’ve met with several prospects who thrive on the printed word, an isolated web page, or door-to-door sales, and cannot see why they need to get in on the social media conversation. Without thinking forward to their future customers, who are doing most of their decision making on line within social platforms, they are destined for extinction.
The concept of change has come up with friends and associates as well. Some have become agents of change to seek new career opportunities, build a client base, or even to improve their social life. How? By embracing the social networks that have been introduced to us and harnessing all that they have to offer.
Yes, many fear the unknown: The very public status update. The transparency of our “behind the scenes.” The new culture of telling it (and hearing it) like it is. But changing your mindset means appreciating rather than fearing the new normal–and being liberated by it. It means that your local business is playing on the same field as a national chain. That your customers are bonding with your brand because they like engaging with the new open you. And that, if you’re really good at it, your brand personality is contagious and you go viral.
Your core business doesn’t have to change, nor your guiding principles. Just be open to the new ways business is getting done and how your customers are choosing which brands to be loyal to. You’ve heard it before, but it doesn’t get old, so I’ll close out with it—The company that doesn’t change, dies.