Being a native of New England and having spent many summer days on the coast of Maine, I have experienced a phenomenon called by locals as a “Sea Turn.” It’s a back door cold front that comes barreling down the coast, causing the temperature to drop sometimes twenty degrees in five minutes with the winds shifting from the south to north, northeast. It’s obviously most dramatic on a blazing hot summer day, and you can see it coming if you’re on or near the water by the dramatic shift in the ocean swells, chop, hence, a “Sea Turn.” Lots of fun if you also happen to be on a sailboat!
Over the years, I have seen many sea turns come and go in our economy. I have been on different “boats” during those times and weathered those changes and in many cases capitalized on those changes. How? I was navigating with an attitude of optimism and readiness, determined to reach my destination even in unpredicatable conditions.
Cautious optimism is now the new normal but with a slight nuance. It is optimism with an attitude and it’s coming on strong. I see it as a major force of will, determination, to launch new brands, new products, grow, regardless of the conditions. Capitalism.
A New Optimism with an Attitude… Capitalism!
Cautious optimism is now the new normal but with a slight nuance. It is optimism with an attitude and it’s coming on strong. I see it as a major force of will, determination, to launch new brands, new products, grow, regardless of the conditions. Capitalism. A crazy question as you reflect and think ahead: What opportunities are lost by not taking risks? Historically, real asset growth is captured by those who carefully plan and skillfully launch their new ventures in spite of all the naysayers.
“True entrepreneurism is always in vogue”
Entrepreneurism is often a topic of discussion in all sectors of the economy. One can see that just by the sheer number of new major business launches throughout the economy in any given season.
But how should one launch given the current conditions? Here are some universal principles in any season.
- Get your first revenues ASAP – Self-funding is no better way to validate your new launch in an existing business or in a new “free standing” new venture. It also proves real value to the current investor market plus giving you immediate feedback on every aspect of your business, targeted customers/buyers, along with new tactics needed to capture greater growth.
- Know your market – Far too often I am asked to prepare an investor presentation and proforma without an adequate understanding by the client of what the buying trends are in the targeted market. Market and competitive information is everywhere; assume nothing and be objective in your analysis in order to be successful in the execution of the GTM plan.
- Do not disregard planning and testing your business model – I was once in a in a leadership role-playing workshop where the facilitator described an interesting fact about the results. She found that those groups who were exceptional in the exercise were those groups, who, when presented a problem, spent the majority of time analyzing/solving the problem before acting upon the solution. Those groups that tried to solve the problem immediately failed. The takeaway: Planning may be counterintuitive to those who like to work “by the seat of their pants,” but in most cases working before planning results in valuable time wasted.
- Be nimble in your launching strategy – Market changes are like the ocean, constant, with dramatic shifts at any time. Are you prepared for those changes? Have you included all international IP threats? Barriers to entry? Have you included the new norm in marketing & sales, business analytics etc.? Again, far too many times, I have seen great inventors/innovators not realize that they need an experienced manager to guide and scale the business while controlling the burn during this critical time of growth.
Need an Experienced Pilot?
A “Sea Turn” of opportunity can show up any any time; are you ready? I learned very quickly in my first venture that having an experienced tactician onboard was my best investment. It may be exciting to be on the next wave of change, and for that matter, exciting to be on a sailboat when a sea-turn is heading your way, but eliminating the risk of capsizing or financial collapse is a highly prudent measure. I encourage you to consider engaging our firm or another experienced confidante to advise you in the launch of your new venture. CARPE DIEM.
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