In the film Everything Must Go, starring Will Ferrell and based off a story from Raymond Carver, Nick Halsey is fired from his job because of a decision he didn’t make, locked out of his bank account and house by a wife who isn’t around and left by his wife for an affair he doesn’t even remember. Needless to say, he’s having a rough day. Since his stuff was thrown out on the front lawn upon his wife’s departure, he decides to simply live in his yard until he finds out it is illegal to do so, at which point he decides to have a 5-day yard sale and completely start his life over.
The movie is great and Ferrell’s acting is top-notch because we are given a close-up view of how hard it is at the ground floor when you’re trying to purge yourself of your previous life and start again.
I want to ease a few minds out there in business world who subscribe to this blog and let you know that I’m not tossing you out on the curb and making you get rid of everything you’ve worked so hard to put in place. We’ve made the case here many times for massive overhauls to your structure, communications plan and strategy implementation, but not everything should get tossed out with the bathwater.
Business As (Un)usual
Yes, if you decide to make the leap towards being a Social Business, a LOT of things will change. A lot, though, will work in conjunction with each other too. Social CRM and CRM systems shouldn’t be combative, but cooperative and you should be able to integrate where you’re going with what got you to this point in your business.
Sure, it may be scary to think that you have to totally rethink who you are as a business and change everything, but that’s not the case. Here are a few things that shouldn’t have to change in this process:
- Your Personnel - Although I’ve stated in the past that a lot of misunderstanding can be attributed to training and hiring practices, I by no means think that during this process you need to hire a whole new group of people. Your employees and management personnel have made you the company you are today and moving on without them would be a disservice to you and them. New training procedures should be put in place regarding the departments that will be affected by the changes, and all employees should be made aware of what’s going on, but by no means should you feel that they are holding you back. You all love the brand and will work together to bring it into a new station.
- Your Brand - This is a big one I hear a lot. Just because you will be adjusting how your brand communicates and possibly reacts to those communications, this is not the place for a new brand. You don’t need new colors, a snazzy new logo or a change in your slogans/ad campaigns. Although some new statements can be made in your advertisements, you don’t need to change who you are to your clients. They fell in love with you for a reason, make sure those reasons stay the same.
- Your Customers - This is also not a call to change your target markets. I’m not saying that every now and then it’s not smart to evaluate your research and markets, but it’s not a prerequisite for shifting towards being a Social Business. Just like your brand and employees have built your company up to this point, your customers have been your lifeblood. These changes that you’re making will simply help you communicate with them more easily and bring them closer to you.
- Your Offerings - Whether you’re peddling a product or service, changing into a Social Business will only heighten the connection between that offering and your customers. Just like you shouldn’t rush out to change your brand, don’t feel like you need to have a whole new line of offerings to satisfy the new level of communications.
We’ll talk a lot about things that will shift and new ways/systems/ideas to consider, but always remember not to throw the baby out with the bathwater. Starting over doesn’t always mean starting with nothing.
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