Do you have a nimble business model? Your business model is the structural foundation of your business.
How rigid is yours? Will it withstand the next challenge?
If you live in an earthquake zone, you well know how the environment constantly tests the structural integrity of construction. Building design and structure must be robust enough to withstand an earthquake without destructing.
The same analogy holds true for your business model. When’s the last time you took a good look at how well it’s designed? Do you have a robust or nimble business model?
If you work for a small to midsize business, chances are someone’s mother or father started that business. You work for (or you are) the son or daughter of that company’s founders. There is a pervasive mindset that reinforces “what got you to where you are today.”
The problem with that mindset is similar to older buildings constructed in earthquake zones. Things shift.
The business ecosystem has changed since your business was originally founded. Yesterday’s seemingly robust business model could stand to be revisited and revised into a nimble business model.
If you are looking at this year’s revenue and project outcome track record, and comparing it to the past three years, and shaking your head, you know what I’m talking about.
Here are 5 questions to get things started towards developing your nimble business model. If you need more help, I’m here.
- What’s your ratio of new customers to retained customers (>2 years)?
- What type of projects form the majority of your output? (Simple, complex, rapid turnaround, low volume, you get the picture)?
- What’s your average revenue and profitability per project?
- Who is responsible for customer acquisition in your organization?
- Based on your answers to these four questions, can your current business model sustain your business?
Nimble business models have key structural components. What makes them nimble is that the model has built-in wiggle room, within the structural constraints of these components.
Owners of nimble business models understand how a slight modification to one component of the business model can impact the remainder of the business model.
Nimble business models involve collaboration rather than figurehead leadership. Each collaborator is responsible for being the CEO of their contribution to the business outcome of the business model.
Nimble business models represent the future for small to midsize businesses, as well as startups, in today’s competitive and shifting business ecosystem.
How would you assess yours?
Babette Ten Haken, Founder & President of Sales Aerobics for Engineers®, LLC is a catalyst for small to midsized businesses transitioning forward, startups in search of growth strategies and professionals who want to develop cross-functional, collaborative core competencies for their next career move.