This post originally appeared on Entrepreneur.com - #Growing Your Business
Staying in business is all about remaining nimble and relevant.
4 min read
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It’s a simple truth: Nothing lasts forever. Times change, and business changes right along with it. If you want to be successful as an entrepreneur, you need to be able to adapt. If you can’t, you could be left in the dust. The ability to evolve professionally can keep you in the game and lead to further growth and success. Here are just a few of the career-shaping reasons why you need to learn to adapt.
To Stay Relevant
One of the few things you can count on in business is change. Technology, culture and consumer tastes are constantly in flux, so if you want to stay relevant, you must be open to changing your mindset and business in kind. No, this doesn’t mean that you have to be first in line to sign up for every new social media platform or invest in all the hottest tech. However, it does mean that you have to be open and willing to make appropriate changes when it makes sense for your business.
For example, not so long ago, many small businesses operated on a cash-only basis because accepting credit cards required prohibitive expenses and fees. These days, with many more payment platforms available, it’s much easier to receive payment in a variety of convenient ways. If you were to insist on remaining cash only, you could be missing out on a lot of sales.
Better Problem-Solving Abilities
Albert Einstein once said, “The measure of intelligence is the ability to change.” Adaptability can help you think outside the box and come up with creative solutions. For example, say that you want to market your company to potential customers. Years ago, you might have sought out newspaper or magazine advertisements, or maybe a TV commercial. But as technology has evolved, many marketing methods have, too. These days, a better solution for a small business might be to invest in an SEO firm to optimize its website and develop a targeted social media plan.
Seeing New Opportunities
If you are closed off to change, then you’re also closed off to new opportunities. By being adaptable, you’ll be able to question the status quo, and this is often where entrepreneurial magic happens. Consider Uber. As company lore goes, the ride-share app was dreamed up after two friends couldn’t get a cab in Paris following a conference and thought it would be great to have a tech-friendly option for easily booking a ride. The idea here is that by being open to change, new opportunities can flourish. Who knows? Naybe a willingness to adapt could help you dream up the next big thing.
You’ll Be Happier
Psychologist, author and speaker Henry Cloud believed that, “We change our behavior when the pain of staying the same becomes greater than the pain of changing.” But why wait for the pain of staying the same to become unbearable when it’s as simple as learning to adapt? When you open your mind to continually developing and changing rather than holding on to the way things are right now, you can avoid the pain and stagnancy that can come with being set in your ways.
You’ll Be More Interesting
Let’s face it: If you’re rigid in your thinking and unwilling to adapt, you’re probably not the most fun person in the room. While routine is not a bad thing, too strict of an adherence to the same old can keep you from growing and hinder your personal and professional development. When you’re able to adapt, you’ll be exposed to more ideas, people and concepts. This will likely make you a more well-rounded individual — more interesting and dynamic. When you’re engaged with the world, you’re engaging as a person and business. This can open many doors and help you keep advancing toward your goals, which is what we’re all in business for in the first place.