We continually speak of a short term and long term vision. We usually back them up with a strategic plan. Be very careful with your vision. You may have to look at your vision and listen to your customers regarding their wants and needs. Customers will tell you what they are looking for in the future and you may want to give serious consideration to amending or augmenting that vision. We can all remember the industries that did not listen. Do you remember the lines and availability at the video stores of the 1990s? Those companies died because they did not listen. Imagine if those companies changed to on line stores, Netflix would have not owned the industry. Customers have told the American furniture industry that they do not want to spend a fortune on furniture but they want something that has a better longevity. They are not listening but the European and Middle Eastern companies are responding. What will the furniture industry look like in ten years? We cannot say today but we could predict they are on the same predicted path. Lean up your business, reduce costs of production by eliminating waste, change the culture and stay as a world leader.
Leaders need to drop their egos and re-examine their vision. There is not an easy fix. Automation works in some industry facets but not all. Reduced cost of materials can assist you margins but only in areas that do not effect quality or the customer. Don’t work faster, design processes that work smarter. Lead the industry you are in by examining your vision and adapting. Your competition may have a hard time challenging an ever evolving target. Listen to your customers, embrace your employee’s ideas, and own the industry.