Thursday, November 24, 2011

Where To Now?

One of the most difficult decisions an entrepreneur makes is whether to stay the course or change directions.

Thank you to
I once worked for an online job portal as a business development manager. As my job title implied, it was my tasked to develop new businesses for the company that will help it increase its profits, make more people aware about its products and services and staying ahead of its competition while at the same time maintaining true to its stated vision and mission.

Ahh... vision and mission. Let me just insert a few words about vision and mission. I will not get into the technicalities of the definition the words, but let me just say that the vision and mission are statements that provide an overall direction to where a company is wants to become. As a general rule, vision statements must be specific and goal-oriented.

Going back to the story; the company was relatively young when I joined. They were just setting-up and in the process of forming the overall company identity. It was an exciting time to be in that company.

At that time, we envisioned the company to become jobseeker-centered. We wanted to give more opportunities to more jobseekers and then endorse them to employers if they fit the technical skills and behavioral (hard and soft skills, respectively) requirements needed by these companies. During that time, employers can still choose to pre-qualify applicants based on their educational background and the companies they have worked in. We wanted to change all of that.

Unfortunately, because of financial constraints, the company we were forced to change the business model a couple of times. It seemed that the company lost its main purpose and overall identity. They wanted to be everything to everyone. They even changed the website too many times.

That was when I decided to leave the company.

Based from what I hear, the job portal is now catering to call centers as one of their outsourced-service providers for pre-qualifying applicants. I am not sure if they are doing anything else.

My message for this blog is very simple.

When deciding to put-up a new venture or a business, start with the goal and objectives. Once you have this, map-out your direction. Stick with it. If you need to make adjustments and improvements to your direction, do it gradually so that it will not alienate your existing and may be loyal customers.

Just imagine a golf ball being hit by a club. A few millimeters of adjustments can give change your direction over the long-run.

If you will make adjustments and improvements, make sure that it is in conjunction with the goals, purpose and objectives you have set-out for your company.

Ask these questions before you finally decide operationalizing your business:

What do you want your company to be? How do you want the public to see your company as? How will you intend to do those things? What are the steps to be taken? Where will you position yourself?