Businesses and New Challenges

Businesses and New Challenges

The COVID-19 crisis spurred me to write this post. The virus is fatal to the old people more than it is for the young. Likewise; an old business is prone to higher risks than when it was young. Risks include rigidity, increased competition, falling in the trap of the success syndrome, changes in technology and the business environment. This point was re-emphasized by Elena Gabor in her comment on my introductory post β€œAgeing of Humans and Businesses” on this issue. Elena wrote β€œDear Ali Anani that is a great analogy. The point is that the human body is affected by age and by medical conditions and the business is affected by socio-political and financial fluctuations of Economy. We humans can get well by changing the lifestyle or taking a good medical treatment. A tired and unwell business will get well through new, fresh ideas, diversification and a healthy injection of capital. Flexibility and the ability to adjust to change are crucial in business and for the human body. KPIs are subjected to change and adaptability”.

Businesses grow and follow the curve as shown in the image below. As the business grows it forms generates new and expanded activities. These include new suppliers, new customers, new competition, and new entrants with better technologies, changing environments, changing customers’ life style, managerial challenges, new work regulations and the businesses become more complex. The businesses go through the stage of growth and enter the conservation stage in which the businesses try to stabilize the businesses. Consequently, a β€œrigidity gap” emerges. The businesses then become exposed to the slightest shocks from outside and prone to their devastating effects. The businesses enter the next fast two stages consisting or the release phase and re-organization phase. Most businesses fail to inject new ideas and release their resources to new activities, end up in the darkness of chaos and phasing out.

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I want to say that the four phases of growth, conservation, release and self-organization impose different challenges in each phase. The adaptation of businesses to meet those emerging challenges is a must; else, businesses shall phase out.

The introduction of Key Performance indicators (KPIs) was a great idea to monitor the performance of each business. Only, this is valid if the KPIs are relevant to the phase in which a business is experiencing. If not, fitting the wrong KPIs to a mature business is like an old man trying to fit in his adulthood clothes. KPIs then should be called β€œKey Locked Performance Indicators”, KLPs.

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There are other challenges that businesses face in their need to keep talents and hire staff with the right skills for each phase of the business. One example is the image I share below:


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Successful businesses grow and mature only if the growth is accompanied by the growth of their wisdom. It is not the age; more it is what we fill it with. @Roberto De la Cruz Utria wrote recently a comment in which he rightly said "Growing wiser every day ... This is the fruit of capacity ;~)

Your thoughts are highly desirable to enrich discussions.


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Franci 🐝Eugenia Hoffman, beBee Brand Ambassador

#38
Always a pleasure and well deserved.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

I thank you Franci\ud83d\udc1dEugenia Hoffman, beBee Brand Ambassador for your reshare. Greatly appreciated

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

I received the following message from LinkedIn. Due gratitude to all readers who made tis congrats possible. Congrats, your post has been trending in #creativity View hashtag https://www.linkedin.com/feed/hashtag/?keywords=%23creativity

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#34
I love the way you think and phrase your comments dear friend Roberto De la Cruz Utria. I started drafting my next post about control and creativity and which way to go. What I have in mind is close enough to your thinking here. You say that varying experiences are better than being focused on one area. As I shall explain in my next post focused is an orderly system and it is the closest to die. Variety of experiences is chaotic and hence maybe confusing. The same applies when to apply the handle and switch to focusing pr variation. You expanded my thoughts and I thank you for it.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

Thank you dear Debasish Majumder for your reshare of the post

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#29
Sad and I am sure it spreads to other places. No country is immune of such acts.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#28
We have a saying here "what I suffer from let others suffer from as well". This mentality finds the spread of viruses cheap and can pass unpunished. This is why I wrote a post today that some behaviors can be riskier than the virus itself. You explained this very well in your comment. Your comment is a call for masses wakeup.

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

1 year ago #27

#28
"Indirectly", need better editing patience. (We have several cases of people attempting to infect others directly or indirectly here in the USA.)

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

1 year ago #26

#28
"We have several cases of people attempting to infect others directly or here in the USA."

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

1 year ago #25

#27
Relativism is the road to Nihilism. We have several cases of people attempting to infect others directly or directly here in the USA. This is nihilism at its strength. "If i have it then everyone should have it!" The concept here is no different than the mass shootings that seemed to dominate the news in recent months. We only exchanged the gun for a sneeze or touch. It is the same psychology. Desperation without values/axioms is the paradigm of nihilistic behavior. This is the Achilles Heel of relativism. Comparing one human paradigm to another will always end this way. Unfortunately it seems to be playing heavy role in response to crisis. One Governor actaully compared his own grandmother to other lives. This is a poor position for anyone in power to state or even use allegorically. Life in and of itself is to be cherished, regardless of the relative nature to the current crisis. To separate out one human, in light of current events, starts the wheel of nihilism. "My grandmother is more important than yours!"

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#25
In a video published two days ago a woman was videoed intentionally putting her hand on the handles of doors of cars and kept moving her to do the same to all parking cars. Sometimes, when people find no hope they do what I call "social retaliation" out of desperation.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#24
Solid reasoning and the Law of Unintended Consequences is plying a dominant role these days. There are reasons for this for people don't realize that if . If one person is infected and in average infects three others soon the problem shall compound because of the positive feedback effect. These three people in turn infect nine others and those infected nine people will infect twenty seven others. The problem compounds very shortly as the graph shows. Only after repeating this process for sixteen times the number of infected people can reach a staggering number of 43046721. Just thinking about these numbers and the associated costs will throw light on all your comments here Harvey Lloyd and the water will drain up. People Media should play a better role than just make people fear each other and realize that one single infection can have drastic effects on society.

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

1 year ago #22

#21
Rumors, misunderstandings and other social constructs we live within tend to find balance naturally. Health, like our children is more a survival aspect as opposed to feelings. A parent considering the exposure to the disease will immediately consider their own survival and secondarily the lives of those they love. Liking/disliking someone may have consequences, but once you consider someone infectious at the level of survival, its no longer social and could be barbarian.

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

1 year ago #21

#20
The one constant in a leaders life, of successful endeavors, is the law of unintended consequences. What am i missing? I hesitate to second guess leaders who are traversing new territory, we all sail blindly into uncharted waters. Media here is screaming about science and yet the science of economies was pitted against identity politics, relativism. This changed the wind of sound judgement. You are correct, the sustainability of this media driven frenzy is not hopeful. It would appear the lessons of the past have been obscured us from the law of unintended consequences. The foolishness, we knew the consequences, but could not see them for the facade of relativism.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#22
Your company sets a great example of what to doing order to manage the virus crisis/ It is a case study on its own.

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

1 year ago #19

If staff represents the heart of the balance sheet then cash is the blood that they pump through the system to create success, one without the other is merely a great exercise in futility. The current crisis has taken the manageable gaps in business we all expect and created the grand canyon. The crevasse looks great but cash is the bridge builder of any gap. Small companies should be looking at holding the team together by utilizing third party resources and available cash to begin building the bridge. They should also be looking at who they will be once across. Once the bridge across is complete you will need start up resources and perseverance as the consumer comes back online. Many of my business friends have calculated this effort and found that they can either build the bridge or have cash post crisis. Setting up a rather draconian release of resources and buckling down. Waiting for the other side to come to them. We were blessed, we landed with enough capitol to hold on to the team through third party support and our own cash. In considering the human paradigms threat right now, we should also consider the Darwinian belief that evolution is predicated on survival. We are watching as business and consumers strengthen themselves to survive. Philosophically we can believe in this theory. But when you are not the business/consumer that will pass on into the next DNA set, it is a little harder to except the theory within a human framework. Fairness and justice will become the lexicons within the stories of demise.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#19
I am about to publish a short post on LinkedIn on "Social Alertness and Responses". You reminded me to publish it because of what you wrote " Can the consumer find this level if we are all social distancing, wearing masks and looking at everyone with allergies like they are a loaded weapon". I find many activities that make this worse such as spreading rumors, mocking at the infected ones so that if others get infected they may tend to hide the infection for fear of being mocked at, trading false masks and other activities. Harvey Lloyd you wrote "The media has been successful in terrifying the consumer of other consumers". It is terrifying the people against each other that the ill acts of some people are emergng

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#18
What a great and visual metaphor this is Harvey Lloyd! Yes, the management of conflicting demands is absolutely challenging so that the water isn't gone. I just wonder what you would do if you were in charge. We see lots of laying offs of workers by businesses to save money. For how long these unemployed can sustain they earn no income I don't know,but surely not for long times. Same with government trying to float the ship. But for how long "So government intervenes with hold over support until the water can be turned back on and float the ship". The governments depend on taxed such as sales tax and income tax. But with people staying at home and with increasing number of people not working the tax revenue is diminishing. On top of that there are emerging needs such as for portable hospitals and medicines. I hope this will not lead to a situation that people would die either of the virus or hunger. It is indeed "climbing back to the precipice takes time and perseverance".

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

1 year ago #16

Working with 40 plus employees, at this time, has shown me, the recovery from this level of disruption will be quite different. Different than past economic spasms. The media has been successful in terrifying the consumer of other consumers. Let's keep in mind that the consumer is also a resource to leaders in business. We cant look at the consumer as an endless flow of resources without seeing them also, as part of the resources in a company that create value for other consumers. This cyclical aspect of the human paradigm is often seen as two very separate details about the same human. We are all vendors and consumers. When the government decides its time to turn the lights back on...............The consumer/vendor human will show up in both venues terrified of their ability to stay healthy. I don't disagree with the thought. But one of the major components of vendor/consumer success is levels of trust. Can the consumer find this level if we are all social distancing, wearing masks and looking at everyone with allergies like they are a loaded weapon. Not that it was ever there to be controlled in the current setting, but public relations on this crisis has failed. The public will have a difficult time engaging in the vendor/consumer relationship post green light.

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

1 year ago #15

The Cape of Africa is where two large bodies of water meet to create treacherous waters. Business sets between two very large bodies, its resources and its customers. Leaders predicatively want smooth sailing along the edge of the confluence of these two great bodies. To calm storms at this edge they manage resources to reduce the friction and other influences within the water itself. However leaders find it difficult to prepare for third party interventions. We could call this the wind. A wind that in some cases is predictable but in most it just shows up at the edge of the two great bodies that create success. In the case of a pandemic, and our current government response, its not wind, temperature or salinity that is causing the friction and turbulent waters, it is the complete removal of the resources and the customer. The water is gone. In this metaphor we all own ships that work through the issues of consumer/resources. Once the water is gone the ship is useless. So government intervenes with hold over support until the water can be turned back on and float the ship. Even to the point that they are also attempting to provide life rafts for the consumer. One major piece is missing in this attempt to restore the water of the economy. Businesses worry that the consumer will not show up at the Cape so reduce resources, while consumers will be bogged down with catch up of missed payments, creditors and potential job loss as businesses pull back. Falling off a cliff is a very speedy endeavor, climbing back to the precipice takes time and perseverance.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#16
Thank you Chris \ud83d\udc1d Guest for highlighting a key point.It is indicators should have short shelf lives. The other key point is your reasoning why they should evolve. I wonder if we take a new business that turned a big one over the years and compare the KPIs for the business as it started and now- how would they compare?

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#14
Much in agreement

Pascal Derrien

Pascal Derrien

1 year ago #12

#12
conceptually I agree reality on the ground is different at the moment agility is key but not paramount

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#10
Dear Oswaldo Enrique Diaz Delgado You are right. I agree with your comment this time. You wrote that A steel gear is strong and weak at the same time; it needs a viscous solution called oil to keep it moving between other gears of greater or smaller size. The analogy is simple big companies need all their gears "Big and small" oil comes to be represented from the wills that are wonderfully proportional to generate opportunities for new jobs instead of reducing! This makes lots of sense to me.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#9
Pascal Derrien I appreciate your comment. I want to give an explanatory example. I am thinking of an old hospital with old equipment and medical staff. Would I go there> Or, I would prefer one that has modernized itself and trained its staff to absorb new medical technologies, scientific findings, new drugs and so on. An agile business to be able to adapt to changes must be ready for change. An evergreen business looks always young and fresh. if it is agile enough.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#8
DearOswaldo Enrique Diaz Delgado You wrote that a simple formula: Whoever has work sustains it from the primary values ​​(Respect, Honesty, Responsibility). These are fixed attributes and should not disappear from an ethical and responsible business. I am discussing here the traits that change with time- dynamic ones. I thank you for giving the opportunity to clarify this point.

Pascal Derrien

Pascal Derrien

1 year ago #8

Old or new does not really make a difference it’s all about your industry segment your cash flow and your sales channels I know very agile businesses who are struggling and may not survive this crisis I would argue that a steady old business have stronger credit lines ....

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#6
John Rylance You spotted precisely why I chose the "evergreen" curve and not a drawn one. This is to say that if businesses are living one then they should learn from evergreen trees. I do appreciate your probing comment.

John Rylance

John Rylance

1 year ago #6

While reading this interesting piece and looking at the picture of leaves, the word evergreen sprang to mind. It suggested to me that to survive a business needs to become an evergreen one. There is a magazine titled Evergreen, which in celebrating the past, the better to enjoy the present and future. The term being evergreen to me is linked to the older generation adapting to present day life, like a business should do.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#4
What a great comment to accompany your re-share of the post my friend Zacharias \ud83d\udc1d Voulgaris. Thank you so much for it.

Zacharias 🐝 Voulgaris

Hi everyone. Here is a post worth reading, particularly if you are a company owner or a consultant. COVID-19 is a serious challenge in the business world. Fortunately, certain changes that we can do to remedy the situation (to the extent this is possible) are easier than others, as they involve a shift in our own mindset. This article outlines the principles related to this change. Cheer!

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#2
Thank You Zacharias \ud83d\udc1d Voulgaris. Yes, we need diverse thinking that adapts to the new business environment and the threats and opportunities these changes present to us. I look forward for making your worthy endeavors available to the public. Good Luck.

Zacharias 🐝 Voulgaris

As per Elena Gabor's quote, I'd elaborate on the diversification part. Diversification needs to be on all levels, not just the physical as it's usually applied on (i.e. employees from different cultural backgrounds). For example, we need to have diversification of views and thought processes too. This can help an organization avoid "group think" which is a detrimental attribute to have, one of an organization at risk. My co-author, Yunus E. Bulut, and I have explored various aspects of the softer side of the data science field as well as AI to some extent. This includes KPIs and business-related questions and strategies. Hopefully, by next month, this new project of ours will become available to the public, so that everyone, not just some technical specialists, can benefit from data science and AI. Cheers!

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

Roberto De la Cruz Utria- you are quoted in this post

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