Heading Down the Stretch
In a lot of ways, the business cycle is very similar to the baseball season. A lot of strategizing, planning and building in the winter months - things sort of "spring" into action in April - it gets exciting in May, June and July, then everyone seems to fall into a dopey haze in August. Business slows down, play seems to slow down and everyone and everything seems to have a lethargic feel and tone to it. Then what happens?
SEPTEMBER! Arguably the most pivotal month in the baseball season (the strong push to the playoffs, that unforseen collapse that ruins the season, or that miraculous winning streak that turns an otherwise lost season completely around). The "miracle" teams (Oakland & Baltimore last year, Milwaukee the previous year and maybe Pittsburgh this year) are always the most exciting. The "memorable" teams (Red Sox & Mets come to mind), famous for their unforgettable meltdowns, do leave you sort of stunned and bewildered right through the off season, and then the teams that sort of fly under the radar. I would say of late, St. Louis, Texas, Detroit etc...These are the teams that seem to stay the most consistent. They never seem to have long winning streaks or losing streaks. They just consistently perform and they always seem to be in it until the end. Which one is your business like?
Well one thing we can say is this...September is right around the corner! That's a fact. We also know that there's one group we definitely DON'T want to be in. A catastrophic collapse in business could mean that there is no next season. And while we'd all probably prefer to have a solid, steady season with few ups and downs, at this point, we can clearly see what kind of season we've had and can look to September to make the necessary adustments. Is it slight tinkering and tweaking? Or is it more radical and sweeping?
Take an honest look at where you are relative to your goal and make the tough decisions. Your lead generation methods may need to be ramped up. An integrated marketing communications campaign doesn't have to be complicated...but it does need to be implemented. This isn't the time to experiement with mobile marketing if you have no idea what you're doing. This is the time to focus on what you're good at and put your foot on the gas.
The season comes down to this. September. What's it gonna be? A collapse is out of the question. It's time for either that steady push to the finish line, or that miraculous comeback that we all fall in love with. Cinderella has officially lost her slipper...it's time for Prince Charming to step up.