By Brent Whyte, Managing Director, Whyte Public Relations
Never has this axiom been more relevant than in the emerging Post-COVID era, when Australian industry will be reshaped by tectonic events.
Supply chains will change, automate and truncate to become rapidly more responsive. The way we work, communicate and engineer the future will be reshaped. The degree to which countries must be more self-sufficient in key areas will emerge as a national priority. Health, energy, infrastructure, defence, flexible manufacturing, construction, sustainability will all be at the forefront of change.
Some of the changes will be new; some will be an acceleration of trends that were already underway; some will kill off old practices that were already on life support before COVID-19 struck.
While no-one has a clear chart to the future (that would be like having tomorrow’s race results or share prices) we do know there will be challenges and opportunities, and there will be winners and losers, depending on how they see the future.
So, while most of us right now are focused on survival – and rightly so – it might also be time to look over the parapet to the world ahead and position ourselves for change.
Ask yourself: is it time now to get out and get your abilities known, to position yourself early as a master of change in the area in which you operate?
To present yourself as an authority with a vision of the future – as someone who sees challenges and change as a time of opportunity, a positive thinker?
Or do you do nothing and believe your reputation will carry you through?
That might work for some, if their corporate vision is clearly understood by the people that sit down to make choices about who gets considered for work, or who is selected for tender lists.
But please don’t sit back and presume that everyone knows your company and what you are good at. Because they often don’t, according to our decades in the B2B business.
Some customers will have a strong idea because they deal with you frequently. Others will have less of an idea – they may know that you do one thing well, but may not have a clue that you are good at other things as well (we find this often with engineer, designers, maintenance managers and staff and leaders at all levels, others throughout industries such as manufacturing and materials handling, mining and energy, oil and gas, construction and architecture, contracting and maintenance, food and beverage, waste management and wastewater, for example).
It is fundamental to understand that all businesses have a reputation in the marketplace. Their choice, really, is not whether they have a reputation, but whether they choose to define that reputation or let their competitors do it for them.
And if you do need to address your marketplace, it may be useful to consider whether you need the help of specialists in local and international B2B communication, publicity and promotion.
If so, find the right people to talk to (naturally our company is happy to talk). Enter a discussion that should be without obligation, but with an eye to the future.
It is not the strongest or most intelligent that will survive, but those that can best manage change.