SBX 31: When Is It Time To Pivot Your Business

When Is It Time To Pivot Your Business

Every business owner eventually arrives at a crossroads with their business where they have to make some tough decisions.  Things may not be going as planned and you feel like you’re just spinning your wheels.  So do you keep plugging along and hope the obvious business problems you face will eventually work themselves out?  Do you pack it in and live to fight another day?  Or do you hang a hard left and take your business in a new direction?

When you start a business you have so much invested in it, both financially and mentally, that it can be difficult to assess your situation objectively.  You’ve probably seen businesses that should have packed in in years before they actually did but you’ve also read of countless stories of entrepreneurs that were on the brink of disaster right before they made their big break through.

So what do you do?

While every business and entrepreneur is different, there may be signs that a change to your business is in order.  Maybe you don’t have to shut down your business, maybe you just need to take it in a new direction.  Sometimes you have to make big decisions to keep your business alive but probably the worst thing you can do is know that things are not right and go on pretending that they are.

Freedom lies in being bold. – Robert Frost

In this episode, our special guest Dan Norris talks with us about his own personal experiences on business startups, knowing when to walk away and how he’s taken his new business WP Curve (learn more about WP Curve in the resources section below) from startup to the buzz of the WordPress community in only a few short months.

Dan Norris-WP Curve

Listen and Learn…

  • How to recognize when you’ve hit a wall or the end of the road for your business
  • Options to consider when you know you need to make changes in your business
  • How pressure and little time can work wonders when it comes to making fast decisions
  • How quick decisions can get your new business off the ground in days, not months
  • How to use content and relationships to quickly grow your new business
  • How a “Service as a Service” business model can be great for recurring revenues
  • And so much more.  When it comes to startups, blogging and WordPress, Dan knows his stuff

Action Steps from this episode:

  1. Recognize when you’ve hit a wall.  Is it a temporary hurdle you have to climb or is it a 100 ft brick wall that may be the end of you?   Take time to evaluate you and your business and if you are still moving in the right direction or toiling away with little progress.  When your target audience knows your business exists but doesn’t care, or maybe you don’t care anymore, maybe it’s time to think about moving onto something that you and your customers will fall in love with.

  2. Brainstorm 3 possible changes. 3 possible pivots… not talking about tear-downs and start all overs, but three possible minor adjustments: maybe it’s a change in customers, a change in product, or a change in scope.  Maybe you don’t need to shut it down, but take it into a new direction instead.  Sometimes even the best businesses need to change if they want to thrive.

  3. Make the decision.  Don’t live in a place of fear.  Spend all the time you need evaluating the situation, but the second you decide on a course of action, go out and start making things happen.  Toiling away when you should be taking action is a sure fire way to die a slow death.

Links and Resources:

  1. WP Curve. Dan’s new startup that provides ongoing WordPress support and quick fixes at a price that any small business or blogger can afford.  Hiring a developer to make changes to your WordPress site is expensive and time consuming, WP Curve makes it as easy as sending an email (24 hours a day) to get whatever fixes and small changes you need for your website.

  2. The 7 Day Startup.  Dan’s upcoming book which is a boot strappers bible on how to launch a business fast and effectively.
  3. Stop Saying You Target Small Business.  A great article that talks about narrowing your ideal customer so you can provide a laser focused message and resources for a specific market.  Maybe we need to change the name of this podcast?
  4. Jing.  Great (and free) tool for recording screencasts on your computer
  5. Skitch.  A great app from Evernote that lets you quickly and easily annotate images and drawings on your computer or mobile device.

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3 replies
  1. Rebecca Gibbs
    Rebecca Gibbs says:

    Great episode guys! It is nice to finally get back to listening to your podcast. Boy have I missed it!

      • Rebecca Gibbs
        Rebecca Gibbs says:

        Mike mentioned that to me. Excited to see what is around the corner!!!! The anticipation is killing me. But at least it gives me a chance to catch up on a few of the episodes I missed.

        All I request is….whatever you guys have planned for the near future, you better still bring up food businesses! 😛


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