Business change is inevitable. However, it’s important to remember that not every change means progress. The challenge is to tell the difference between a hype, a fad, and a valuable trend. Read how to approach and respond to changes in the business environment wisely. How to check whether a phenomenon, such as artificial intelligence, is just a fad or a lasting trend that can bring benefits and innovation?
How to introduce business change wisely - table of contents:
Wise business change
In the face of technological progress, evolving customer expectations, and fierce competition, embracing change has become not only a necessity but also an art. How to find your way through the maze of hypes and trends? How to tell the difference between effective innovation, business change, and a fad? The answers to these questions are crucial for any entrepreneur who wants to manage their business wisely and reach long-term success.
What are trends, fads, and hypes?
To implement change in your business wisely, it’s crucial to understand what hypes, fads, and trends are. These are three distinct phenomena that can have a varying impact on your company. Let’s start by defining each of them:
- A hype is a phenomenon that generates a lot of interest for a short time but has no lasting effect. A good example can be Dogecoin, a cryptocurrency, which reached a record value in 2021 thanks to celebrity and social media support but quickly lost popularity and credibility.
- A fad is a phenomenon that is popular for some time but does not bring significant changes in the way businesses work. An example of a fad could be wearing masks with company prints or logos, which became common during the COVID-19 pandemic, but had little impact on companies’ marketing or sales strategies.
- A trend is a phenomenon that lasts longer and brings changes to the market and business. An example of a trend could be the growth of e-commerce, which significantly increased in 2020 and 2021 due to coronavirus-related restrictions, reshaping consumer shopping behaviors and setting new requirements for retailers.
Separating hype from business change
Are you wondering whether a phenomenon like using artificial intelligence to develop business applications is a hype or a valuable trend? Answer the following questions:
- Duration – a hype lasts for a short time, while a trend tends to have a long-lasting impact. For example, the development of artificial intelligence is often compared to the invention of the steam engine, electrification, or the introduction of the transistor. Such improvements can’t be undone, and they inevitably become an integral part of our reality.
- Impact – a hype doesn’t affect the structure of the market or the way businesses work, whereas a trend can profoundly change the rules of the game. For example, the convergence of rapidly growing solutions like 5G, cloud computing, and AI, make them disruptive technologies, i.e., causing great changes across industries and aspects of life
- Innovation – valuable changes bring major innovations that contribute to the growth of the industry. For example, the progress in machine learning will enable the development of sophisticated applications and tools for real-time speech translation or for creating personalized ads and commercial offers.
In this way, you can tell if the changes introduced by your competitors are just fads, or if it’s worth taking a closer look at them and implementing them in your company.
Best practices in business change management
To introduce business change wisely, it’s worth following a few rules. First off, analyze the market, stay abreast of the latest trends, and observe what is happening in your industry. Secondly, consult experts. Talk to people who have experience in introducing changes in business and benefit from their knowledge. You don’t have to schedule a meeting with a specialist right away. For now, you can watch their LinkedIn profile or attend a webinar.
Thirdly, use data and make data-driven decisions. Data will help you understand whether a particular change is permanent, seasonal, or just random and whether adapting your company to the current situation will bring you any benefits. For example, analyze sales data and website traffic statistics to assess the effectiveness of the implemented changes.
Finally, test new solutions. Don’t introduce large-scale changes immediately. For example, apply a new marketing strategy to one product group only before expanding it to the entire assortment.
Implementing business change. Successes and failures
If you seek inspiration for making business change, take a look at these two examples. Identifying a hype and a trend can be crucial for the existence of your business.
A successful change has been implemented by Netflix. The company started with DVD rentals and today is a giant in the streaming industry. Netflix managed to adapt to evolving customer preferences and needs by investing in its own content and online platform. This has given it an edge over its competitors and made it a market leader.
Kodak, on the other hand, failed to adapt to the digital revolution in photography, and this led to its bankruptcy. Kodak was a pioneer in analog photography but ignored the growing demand for digital cameras and online services. Despite having its own digital technology, it failed to leverage it in time and lost its customers’ trust and market share.
Adaptation and innovation are key factors that contribute to business success. By using change as a tool to achieve sustainable success, you can not only gain a competitive advantage but also increase the efficiency of your business. However, it is important to strike a balance between implementing change and maintaining stability.
Making a distinction between hypes, fads, and valuable trends can be crucial for the success of your business. Introducing smart changes based on data analysis, consulting experts, and testing new solutions can contribute to the sustainable growth of your company. Remember that adaptation and innovation are integral elements of running a business, but it is equally important to maintain stability and consistency in your efforts.
Now that you understand the differences between hypes, fads, and trends, as well as how to introduce business change wisely, think about what changes can boost the development of your organization and how you can implement them.
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