It may surprise you that my very successful colleague whose been in business 10+ years says there's not a single service she offered then that she offers now! Why? Because business stasis is tantamount to stagnation! Changing direction is not only normal, but also a healthy sign of growth. But how do you pivot in your business without losing the traction you've built?
The answer is your business narrative.
Think about the people who follow you – they signed up to your list, liked your Facebook page and connected with you on LinkedIn because they?re interested in what you?re doing, saying and sharing. Now imagine they wake up looking forward to opening your email all about dog grooming only to find out you've pivoted into day care! Not only does that jar with all you stand for, but you?re no longer honouring the promise you made at the beginning of the relationship, so trust (and relevance) takes a nosedive.
But pivoting doesn't have to be painful?
How to pivot like a pro
Have you ever been mid flow in conversation when the person you're talking to abruptly changes the topic. This sudden U-turn is disconcerting, it makes you think they've got bored or aren't listening. Either way, if it keeps happening, you'll make a quick get away! Pivoting is the same?
You need to segue the conversation you've been having into the new conversation you want to start having. And you do this in 2 ways..
- Find the golden thread
- Build a brand narrative around it
Let’s look at each of these
Finding your golden thread
The golden thread is the theme that underlies everything you do. It's rarely about what you do and always about why you do.
Take my client Robyn for example. When it comes to what she does she’s worn many hats, from an aromatherapist to social worker and now celebrant, but her golden thread runs brightly through all of these, it's story telling. Robyn's ability to listen, empathise and gather stories means in each of her professions she's been a curator of memories, transforming them into stories that help others make sense of their lives.
So, when she pivoted into her as celebrant, it was this golden thread that made the transition seamless for her audience.
Building a brand narrative
Your brand narrative is the story that’s woven from your golden thread, helping people make sense of the transition you’re making.
This narrative is in everything you write, but when you make it intentional you bring greater consistency and flow so it becomes the beacon that throws light on all the things you do. Let’s take a look at my own brand narrative and how it’s changing.
For a long time my brand narrative wasn't very inspiring, it went something like this. I write words for websites. But after returning from my Kilimanjaro climb this year, I had a light bulb moment, although I’m all about the words, they’re simply the tangible outcome of the inner work we do together. My brand narrative is to inspire you to adopt an adventurous mindset so you can take action on your launches and offers. Boom!
Not only is that much sexier, but it also now fits into a context that makes sense when you hear me on a podcast talking about adventure, mindset and the power of possibility! (By the way, want to hear that? Find it here).
Are you thinking about pivoting in your business? Here’s one thing you can do today…
The #1 action you can take today?
Your brand narrative begins with finding your golden thread. To do this identify the 3 pivotal moments in your personal development –
- What's shaped you into who you are today
- What choices do you make based on your values
- How do your beliefs and values show up
These 3 pivotal moments are the key to revealing the themes that run through your life and finding your golden thread. If you’d like some help with this, use my free story workbook to find a 5 step framework to guide you.