Is your business and market ecosystem in flow or dammed up?

By: Bill Van Eron Tuesday June 5, 2018 0 comments Tags: Bill Van Eron

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By ‎Bill Van Eron

Conscious Market Strategist

Headwaters Marketing and Innovation

Nature offers many lessons for us as people, and as organizations, once we simply open ourselves to get beyond our personal and business limiting status quo.van-eron-stream-photo

Falling into status quo patterns is hard for leaders or employees to recognize. But the indicators reveal actionable truths:

  1. When is the last time you updated your best practices? If it has been a while, you are likely seeing erosion in sales, marketing and innovation where things got stale. 2. Increased employee turnover; difficulty to recognize and attract the talent that makes organizations great.                                                                                      
  2. How often are new ideas offered, and acted on, recognized and rewarded? Do employees even try?                                                 
  3. Is your organization accountable and genuine to promises made internally and externally? Markets have total transparency to you. Do you? Why not? Be the first to know, recognize & leverage what works.
  4. Are you stuck in silos that act like dominant turfs, while perpetuating it by seeking silo solutions? Do you look at your list of top ten priorities and just pick one? Does it surface again on next year’s list, and the next as yet unresolved? The list goes on and grows faster than managements preference to isolate a problem or just pick one. In truth it’s all interconnected, if you look at business and markets through a designers conscious mindset.

How would you value the ability to resolve everything human into one integrated strategy that naturally resolves needs, such as; inclusion, diversity, an open culture, innovation and far higher performance?

  1. Technology can create unprecedented agility across routine actions and free people up to invest to relate to their markets and each other, see, synthesize and act on more opportunities and create that organization culture, new stability, and revenues performance far better than any other means.
  2. Get past the notion that all investments have to affect the bottom line, because if you fail to invest in a purpose, trust, credibility and relevance, you’re toast.  
  3. Embrace your system to leap further ahead and earn more regard than 95% of your competitors.

But knowing what is stopping you or causing most employees to not go that extra mile, is the most important initial action you can take.                                                

Many business leaders still hold on to the need to control everything versus earning it by observing, listening and challenging ideas with diverse input internally and externally. When new employee recruits ask "What do you stand for? Or what is your purpose?" does your answer fail to inspire most?  Do you discount such investments as not being directly tied to the bottom line?  If so, embrace your inner dinosaur as extinction is sure to follow. Or adapt to thrive. The choice is yours while those that do wholeheartedly embrace today's success requirements will most definitely enjoy being in flow with internal and external values.   

You may wonder how this is all connected. In truth, it's all interdependently connected. Until you invest to understand your business and market ecosystem - equivalent to investing in others - your business is like a dammed up river, missing the value of being in flow with what matters to those who define success… your markets and your employees. Success is no longer just flooding a valley with one way controlled messages. It never has been. Today, in fact, when people feel they are being sold or marketed to, they tune you out completely. Yet most businesses still call that arm a sales force -- despite how that effort has been drying up over the last decade -- neither a force or sales companies can count on as a predictable value.

Look at marketing. It is increasingly tasked to create leads, brand value, manage campaigns as expectant to revenue growth. It’s like watering sand. Without a foundation of trust, credibility, and relevance, the most creative teams can only paint a dead horse to look good, while all else know it can't run as a competitive value so your business sinks while your costs rise.

What are your real objections? Many will ask you what are your hopes and dreams, your goals and strategies? Sharing those may yield less traction than facing and sharing what has appeared as obstacles to your success. Sure, some obstacles may appear as formative, yet many more are inadvertently self-imposed. The first thing all, or most organizations lose soon after they open,  is their objectivity. Some are so consumed by being too close to their business and accepting to the status quo, that they act in complete shock when a conscious trained, outside-in advisor can see quite clearly what needs a different and  better approach. As importantly, we also see who you are at your best and what may be getting in your way. 

Let's revisit the stream-fed river metaphor. Imagine the following in place:                                                

      1. Employees, stakeholders and outside-in catalysts all willfully and adeptly contribute fresh streams of insight, value, and more as vital to strengthening your market-inspired business            flow. They come with higher quality ideas as they too are plugged into the ecosystem and the pulse of your business and markets. Their ideas are seriously considered, evaluated,                acted on as viable, recognized and rewarded. More employee’s care to matter to a system that enables them to do so.                                                             

  1. Leadership still has structure, but is no longer a top down model. It flourishes from within and through healthy access to outside-in value streams. The outside-in factor is vital for businesses wanting to stay open and relevant, stressing customer-centricity and who should value agile insight, strategies and actions...all now with greater unity in purpose, inclusion and shared revenue growth.                                         
  2. While many leaders stress about change as chaotic, you will have invented the new stability because the values that are driving today's success have been in place for decades. I know as I tapped into them every time as far back as 1990. Those values are only stronger today. You too can still be among the first. Soon, it becomes your Regenerative Success System - something all organizations can only dream about.

Many research efforts report leaders have a fear of what transformation really means, and the resulting vulnerabilities. Summed up, those fears are a blend of personal and historic perceptions of change. Will it be disruptive in a bad way? Will it slow us down and disappoint shareholders? Will it be expensive and too little too late? Or…gee, I am so close to retirement so do not want to risk my job and make waves. And the worst with regard to accountability in leadership…will I look bad when a full assessment is done? 

With firsthand empathy and experience applying future-ready approaches, we apply all of these questions towards designing a system-worthy, digital enabling solution that hits all like OMG - continuous enlightenment. You know that feeling. Wow, why couldn't we have been open to this sooner? Gee, this isn't bad at all. Matter of fact, it's great. That's the power and the gift of a new breed of advisory that we hold ourselves up to as a new collaborative and higher performance standard. Because it’s not about us, it’s about enabling you and providing the mindset and skill insights to master your own collective universe. Your success compass will inspire you every day to care to matter and know how to. That will be absent of ego, and openly excited to reinvent your "we" as representative of that new breed of winners that everyone values, respects and absolutely wants to be part of.

Jump in. The waters represent your ecosystem in flow with enabled humanity as your greatest asset. Create value up and downstream more conscious to what matters to others across your ecosystem. Embrace your business humanity and success will follow like a best friend.

Bill Van Eron

About the Author: Bill Van Eron

Bill Van Eron, founder of Headwaters Marketing & Innovation, has an extensive design-rooted career that naturally evolved to a still rare, yet high-impact conscious design mindset that finds and transfers greater value to actions across business, life and community. These skills & systems thinking immerse in a range of customer-facing and influencer-facing environments. Far greater possibilities are clarified to the benefit of leadership, vision innovation, inclusion, trust and relevance. As always, I focus my time on enabling others to achieve greater success across realms most businesses miss, yet profit by. Not about me, about an enabled we. Let’s start the dialog (970 221-0751 https://www.linkedin.com/in/bill-van-eron/  [email protected]).