Value levers for business in 2017 . Strength, versatility , flexible decision making and listening.
For those of you who don’t know , TUFO is a rock formed from volcanic activity thats much used on the Amalfi coast – used extensively as it’s strong, light, versatile and easy to work with despite its origins as volcanic lava- something so robust and useful arising from something so destructive .So why lead my 2017 blogs with this title , strength , flexibility / versatility are the qualities we will all need after the turbulent , seismic shifts in the business environment arising out of 2016. So be like TUFO ??
The UK is sailing new waters post Brexit and the US about to embark on its own new journey. The US is where I spent last month; which I found to be surprisingly is generally enthused , optimistic and they seem to love Donald Trump. Whatever your politics , business like the idea of him in power as do a good proportion of the middle classes [ the decision and management layer of most economies]
Now back home , British reserve means we might react quite differently to such a personality ;we give the appearance of liking our politics and business advice , more gentle, softly spoken with a veneer of respectability.
Trump is like TUFO . Born of an interesting history , more flexible and malleable than on first glance and he will twist and turn as circumstances change. In business this reactive style makes for success. In politics voters don’t like inconsistency . A conundrum for sure. Is that why Europeans arent quite so sure of him. He doesn’t play the game of being nice?
With an increase in State led policies [ protectionism for the economists out there ] and reduction in tolerance for migration ; is this a battle centred on Petroeconomics – the politics of oil and gas reserves ? Are we about to head into another cold war despite the Putin Trump twitter love fest?..are these bigger features in the lack of investment and conservative decision making, we have seen in people and capital these last few years. Fear = Stop in some boards.
Whatever this year holds , 2017 will need flexibility , tolerance and strength . Business needs to listen carefully and react/respond.
This isn’t a time for sticking to the knitting , thats where Mr Branson and I agree. Change is an opportunity for those who take it, understand it and work with it. Not a typical UK approach to decision making. Culturally in the UK the ambition is to be management not entrepreneurs. Steady job and pension are the usual asks, not so for other continents. The American dream encourages the thought you can have it all [ despite the largest gap in wealth distribution]. But that aspiration and positivity does drive change and innovation.
Good luck for 2017 and keep your wits about you – it’s going to be interesting!