Blog Plan Your Pivot

Dear Clean Creeders,

Paraphrasing the New York Times, “small businesses are still having to pivot, pivot, pivot to survive.”

I agree, but would add:

Small businesses need to make friends with failure fast and plan to pivot, pivot, pivot to survive. Because that’s one advantage small businesses have over the big boys.

All businesses fail and encounter hardship. But small businesses are better equipped to adjust the way they conduct business — or shift their approaches – in a way that the it-takes-8-levels-of-management-to-approve-change companies can’t.

Small businesses have had to fail – then get out of their comfort zones and learn new skills, understand changing customer needs, and create new solutions to better serve their customers. Often with multiple hiccups in-between.

It’s been key to survival.

Learning how to examine our mistakes and successes so we can pivot, is not a skill set only helpful during a pandemic. It’s a practice we should incorporate into our small businesses every day, with every win and every loss.

One way to learn to pivot is to routinely complete a “Project Review.”

At the most basic level, a Project Review helps you take an experience (a win, a deal, a loss, a good hire, a bad hire, a mistake, a customer compliment, a set-back, a home-run) and break it down into actionable conclusions about what went right, what went wrong, and what could be done better.

But these lessons won’t amount to much if they are not used for continuous improvement – which is how you pivot.

Continuous improvement leverages experience and ensures that each subsequent project can be executed at the highest quality, in less time, at a lower cost, and with fewer mistakes. It doesn’t mean “mistake-free,” it means not repeating the same mistakes repeatedly and continuing to replicate your successes repeatedly.

To that end, please find our Clean Creed Project Review Report form – a form that, if used consistently, can help you make friends with failure fast, and plan your pivot, pivot, pivot to survive.


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