The first step smart printers do is recognize the need for change.
While simply recognizing that need might sound “too easy,” the truth is that there are many in the world today who have yet to take even this first step.
Those smart printers take the time to assess things such as:
- How has my print business changed in the last year?
- What new things am I trying?
- How am I growing?
If you’d struggle to come up with answers to those questions, you’re not alone. Many print businesses hold fast to this idea that doing the same things over and over again will yield different results. We all do.
That’s because change is hard. It brings with it periods of uncertainty, of doubt, and it seems to inflame even the tiniest of insecurities. But, once those smart printers learned to anticipate and embrace the changes necessary to grow their print businesses, they were better (and most likely bigger) for it.
Here’s what anticipating and accepting change looks like for smart printers…
Smart Printers Recognize What’s Not Working
This part is easy.
Almost always (ok, 95% of the time), most companies are able to clearly identify and state what the issues are. In the nation’s print shops, those issues might sound similar to:
- “The website isn’t getting the traffic we want.”
- “People are coming to the website, but we don’t have the tools for them to order online.”
- “My customer base is shrinking because I don’t know how to create a connection with my print buyers.”
Smart printers point out the elephants in the room and call them out.
Smart Printers Change the Right Things
While the aspect of change can inspire and motivate print leaders to try new things, there’s a key point to remember here:
Smart printers recognize that changing things won’t make a difference until the right things are changed.
Showing up to work tomorrow morning on the warpath of change won’t win you any friends, and it won’t grow your print business. Instead of going all ninja-warrior, smart printers lay out the top one or two issues from your “What’s Not Working” list and focus on changing those. They don’t spend limited resources focusing on changing items that, although they might truly need fixing, won’t help with their longterm vision or goal.
Smart Printers Maintain Their Point of Reference
Imagine there’s a pot of print-buyer gold at the end of the rainbow and, from your vantage point, you can see a clear path towards it.
All it takes is winding your way down off of Mt. ComfortZone, making your way through the Unknown Forest, and (BAM!!) you’re the king of the print world! You head out on your way with your head down, focused, all the while trying to stay motivated (“I got this. This isn’t so hard.”)
But after a while, you begin to find yourself in unfamiliar territory, and the motivation that brought you here is starting to wane. Now, you’re deep into the woods of your journey, you’ve lost your point of reference, and you can no longer see what direction you should be heading. While many would either head back to the safety of what they know or stay where they are and give up,
Smart printers would climb a tree!
To anticipate and accept change, smart printers keep their end goal in their sights at all times. Is your goal to retire early? Spend more time with your family? Pass along your print business to one of your kids? Grow your business to sustain itself and live off the profits?
Whatever your mission is, remember that smart printers climb a tree every once in a while to maintain their point of reference and make the necessary course corrections if or when they need to.
Smart Printers Keep an Eye Out for Easter Eggs
While the path to reach a goal may seem long, hard, or expensive, smart printers know that if they’re willing to look, there are Easter eggs of opportunity out there.
For example, what if…
- To solve your order turnover issues, you were able to tap into technology that speeds up your productivity?
- To solve your marketing time constraints, you outsourced some of your marketing items to trusted partners?
- To solve your fear of change, you connected with influencers who could mentor you since they have blazed the trail before you?
All of these are possible for smart printers because:
Smart printers are always on the lookout for the next opportunity.
Remember, there’s a whole lot of growth potential for your print business. More times than not, you’ll grab hold of that potential just beyond your comfort zone.