There comes a time with most businesses that you will need or want to Pivot. It's no different with us at theBVDCenter.
Our business flourished this past year despite the Pandemic. Lots of new clients and lots of business formations that kept us busy and profitable. But I lost sight of my original vision and passion of curriculum development and entrepreneurial training.
So it's time to Pivot!
For us that means, restructuring, reorganizing and revamping our business plan.
What I did, made Business Formation and Entrepreneurial Training two separate divisions within one organization. I delegated the role of Business Formation to my Director of Client Engagement, while I give my time and energy on what I really love, curriculum development and entrepreneurial training. This is growth and a win-win for theBVDCenter and our clients.
Once you’ve decided to pivot your company, you must take into account the numerous factors that entail a successful pivot. Here are some tips to help ensure that you reduce the risks associated with pivoting and increase your chances of a lucrative outcome:
1. Do it as soon as you can
Many companies pivot more than once, so don’t give up on the startup life if you think you may have to change course a few times to get your company on the right track. However, if you are going to pivot - whether it’s once, twice, or multiple times - you need to do it as early as possible, as this helps avoid wasting time, effort, and money.
2. Pick new goals that align with your vision
Entrepreneurship is hard, and it requires you to be as brutally honest with yourself as possible, as launching and running multiple companies, or even one company, is a years-long endeavor. If the path you’re on now doesn’t feel right to you, you not only need step back and evaluate your mission in life, but you need put in extra time to ensure that your new vision is the right one for you.
3. Don’t scrap that work you’ve already done
Because pivots don’t necessarily require a radical change of course in every case, it’s important to identify what aspects of your company can be salvaged, kept, and reused once you’ve settled on the new direction to head in. You’ve already spent so much time, energy, and money on building a sustainable business, that you should be able to redirect your current resources towards your new goal.
4. Listen to your customers
The feedback you receive from customers is a great indicator for whether you should pivot or not. While occasional negative feedback is expected, if you’re constantly getting criticisms like “too expensive”, “not enough features”, “the purchasing process is too complex”, “there are other, better products out there”, or any other feedback along those lines, you might be ready for a pivot of some sort.
5. Make sure your pivot presents opportunities for growth
Yes, pivoting can be a useful decision for a startup that’s encountered a roadblock and can go no further. However, if you pivot your company in a new direction without much thought as to where you’re going next, there’s a strong possibility that you’ll hit yet another roadblock, just under different circumstances. To help prevent this, make sure that you not only consider pivoting from your original path, but that you take into account the opportunities for growth and expansion in your new path. If the market is smaller, the customer base is less diverse, or has too much competition, then it’s not worth risking starting another company, so keep looking.