With the latest round of earnings reports, I’ve been noticing a few terms being used repeatedly in each company’s outlook: uncertain, unclear, unknown. That uncertainty can make it difficult to choose the best way to respond to current economic conditions. You can always cut costs and improve efficiencies, but how can you tell if the choices you make now will be the best for the future when you can’t even glimpse the future?
In the latest issue of the Deloitte Review, authors Dwight Allen, Mark Klein and Craig Muraskin take on this question in their article What Next? Business in 2010 and Beyond." They write:
"The wrong answer is to adopt nebulous strategies in the hope of succeeding regardless of what happens."
While broad, generic responses can improve your chances of surviving, they are also the same actions that everyone else is taking, limiting your ability to thrive based on your ingenuity.
Instead, the authors suggest looking at the differences between the available economic analyses, and understanding the why of the differences. That information could then be translated into specific, yet flexible, strategies to improve your company’s response to the economy while maintaining the attributes that make your company different.