Looking forward, looking back

Success can hinder your progress; if you feel like you are doing ok it makes it harder for you to keep doing ok. That’s because the world is changing so rapidly. Before you know it, you have missed the next big thing. Nobody will tell you what the next big thing is, but by trusting instincts, avoiding complacency and monitoring the drivers of change in your industry, will prepare you for its inevitable impact.

The digital age dictates we must become a ‘futurist’ for our own enterprise. The ‘out of your control’ big picture scenario demands our attention, because global political, technological and corporate agendas are penetrating comfort zones in every industry. There are many uncomfortable people in business today feeling the winds of change, who need to take a futuristic look at their current circumstance to decide how to protect assets and maintain the love for what they do. It’s no fun standing in the middle of a cyclone and pretend it isn’t even windy, (which is what happened to the music business.)

A fresh and totally different approach to the way we do business is often the answer, which is what I’ve done with my communication business. I’ve produced a live ‘musical’ to my latest book, and sought technical assistance from the biggest game changing company on the planet – Apple. I registered into their ‘one on one ‘ live training sessions, creating  a new A/V ’product’ that reflects the words and music of my new book.

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It takes 10% of the effort to create a new product and 90% to sell it, which includes finding innovative ways to get noticed. Innovation is a great secret weapon, but if you don’t have the skills to do something with it – it will remain a secret.

Spending time however, within the Apple retail environment was another ‘lesson’, as I observed consumers eagerly embracing their offer. We don’t need reminding that music, publishing, movies, travel, photography and retail are just some of the industries forced to reshape their core business model or face extinction. Apple played a pivotal role in driving these transitions. However, there is much more to come as innovation evolves from the DNA of existing inventions, and ‘cloud’ services improve.

Consumers want the best solutions possible to make their lives easier and Spotify is an example of this. You can listen to all your music more affordably and more easily anywhere in the world. Within the same context of innovation, It’s not surprising to witness the emergence of Uber, (an app-based transportation network) using mobile phone technology to challenge existing traditions of the taxi industry. (As a further reminder we didn’t have the iPhone 10 years ago!)

The rise of the digital age has altered consumer views on acquisition, convenience, price and value of most goods and services, regardless of industry, and looking forward, looking back – tomorrow will be a different world.

Little bull enterprises 2015
Barry’s latest book ‘Take the bull by the horns’ is available from Amazon, iTunes and www.barrybull.com