I was in a hotel meeting room in Madison Wisconsin. I had taken all the classroom tables and chairs out. Scoured the hotel for every lounge type chair and couch, and set the room for a three day business model workshop.
As the business unit general manager walked in she paused … turned her head from left to right, and said, “Well this is different.”
And then, at 7:58 AM sharp, she kicked off the workshop before turning the three days over to me.
- Our products have been commoditized
- The relationships we relied on, are no longer creating the loyalty we once enjoyed
- The services we offer, can be found in our competitor’s offerings
- New and non-traditional competition has entered the market
Her conclusion; there was a need to develop a new model. A new way of creating value. She said we must innovate our way out of this. And, then she looked at her team. She paused for affect. And she said … “If not us, who?”
You Can Do This
Go on, list the challenges your business face on a white board. And on another list the opportunities in front of you (their are many!). Then lead a discussion with your leadership team. Let them know that there are solutions to overcome the challenges and to seize the opportunities. And ask them … if we don’t figure this out … If we don’t lead the innovation process … If we don’t think different …
If not us, who?
* This article first appeared in the Innovation Corner column of Supply House Times.