In the video, they go through all the different mistakes that some rather large companies made.  Let’s summarize what we can learn from them.

  • If It Ain’t Broke Don’t Fix It: Coke had a great product, so recreating a successful formula damaged their company and the consumer’s perception of them.  Heck, the recipe had worked for 99 years!
  • Be Ready for Opportunities: Fox sold rights to merchandising, because they did not see a future in merchandising. Blockbuster did not buy Netflix because they did not see the future in the concept.  Mars did not partner with E.T. because they did not understand the potential.  Don’t branch out just to branch out, but look for opportunities that compliment what you are already doing.
  • Diversification May Be A Good Thing: Spielberg sold Pixar because he did not want to be an animation.  He wanted to stick to what he knows.  Diversification works when it compliments what you do.  It is not about getting off your current goals for your business. it is about adding a new dynamic that will accent your company.  On the other hand, don’t do something that will distract you.  Spielberg may have made a good decision.*
  • Strike While The Iron’s Hot: Keep Trying New Things.  If you don’t try something new, you won’t know what works.  If you find something that works, go out and be the first person in your market.  Kodak sat on a great idea and went bankrupt.  Don’t be stingy…if you have an idea, let it fly!
  • Notice Trends: Beatles and Google were trends.  The concepts were solid, but they were trending.  Too many businesses are quick to stop an idea thinking it is at the end of a trend.  Don’t be too quick to discount trends…the word ‘trends’ means pattern.  They don’t just go away, the ebb and flow.  Be aware, do your research, but make sure you follow your gut.
  • BONUS: Listen To Your Customers: Talk to your loyal customers before you make any large changes.  It will save you lots of money and tons of time.

*Keep in mind we are looking at these decisions based on our current knowledge.  Looking back on decision is easy.  Making good decisions takes talent.

Always keep trying…always keep dreaming.

About LyleH