If we wish to stay in business we need to remain relevant to our target markets. That statement may seem obvious. However, particularly when riding the waves of success, we may become complacent without realising it. In this rapidly evolving world, the consequence of not regularly checking our relevance could mean our becoming obsolete and thus going out of business. Recent examples are Kodak and Borders. And in the words of Michael McQueen ‘many of the world’s top brands are dropping like flies’.
As an example of remaining relevant, let’s look at a specific business, the ‘speaking’ business. As speakers if we aren’t timeously providing a message that is relevant to each audience it is unlikely that we will remain successful. We need to check regularly. How do we do that?
Australian speaker, Michael McQueen has an excellent, simple model using relevance and time as the two axes. This tool can be applied in any business.
I have watched Michael in action and he personally ‘walks the talk’. He remains relevant to his audiences. Recently I was privileged to be in the audience at two of his talks on the same topic, ‘relevance’ and these presentations took place less than a month apart. The audiences were very different and yet he was able to effectively address their specific needs.
At the first event, we were both presenters at the TAFI (Travel Agents Federation of India) Convention in Durban, South Africa. The 1000 travel agents in the audience (mostly the owners of their businesses) were fascinated by Michael’s strong message which really ‘hit home’ for them. They felt that he understood their industry and they were motivated to ‘take action’ in checking the current relevance of their businesses in India. His message was powerful and would help them navigate change and stay ahead in the relevance curve.
Less than a month later, Michael presented his talk on ‘relevance’ at the NSAA (National Speakers’ Association of Australia) convention up at the Gold Coast. As a member of the New South Wales Chapter, I was in the audience. I’m convinced that every member of that audience would have been motivated to check the relevance of their business on Michael’s simple model and then take appropriate action. So, Michael is an excellent example of the business of speaking, the art of speaking and the heart of speaking. Well done, Michael!
Regardless of what business you are in, how relevant is your business right now? And on the time line, how far along the relevance curve are you? Are you moving towards the ‘tipping point’ or are you further along and nearing the ‘turning point’? Or have you gone past that and are in a downward trend? And where-ever you are on this journey, what is the appropriate immediate action for you? Asking these questions will not only give your business a greater chance of survival, it could lead to multiplying your success. Recognising opportunities and then optimising them are skills which can be enhanced.
I trust that this article has given you ‘food for thought’. For more information on ‘relevance’ and how you can be assisted in navigating change, you may wish to visit Michael McQueen’s website or e-mail: info@TheNexgenGroup.com. The author of 3 best selling books, Michael's newest release, Winning the Battle for Relevance is a revealing look at why good ideas and great companies become obsolete and how to avoid their fate.