In a classic Rowan Atkinson and Richard Curtis routine, Rowan asks “what is the secret to great comedy?” But before Richard can offer his reply, Rowan interrupts. “Timing” he blurts out.
Timing is, of course, essential to great strategy as well. Commit too early, and we risk over-investing or distracting ourselves from something more urgent and important. Commit too late, and we might miss a new opportunity entirely or end up falling woefully behind.
Understanding when to act at all, much less knowing when to act decisively, has everything to do with developing keen awareness of relevant factors and acceptance of their implications. Here is where most get it wrong.
Because most brands fail to invest sufficiently in developing actionable market and consumer insight, their ability to discern between “might happen”, “will happen” and “has happened” is woefully lacking.
Because most organizations do not have sufficient commitment to experimentation, they aren’t ready to act boldly when “might happen” becomes “will happen”.
Because most companies spend more time defending the status quo rather than embracing the future, they are often stuck in the past and miss “has happened” entirely.
Many important dynamics have–or are about to–change your customers and your business. Whether you realize it or not, is one thing.
And whether you are prepared to act on that realization is ultimately the difference between winning and wondering what the heck just happened?