Volume 18 Number 7 - July 7, 2020


Flounder is a fish.  It is not a business strategy, nor an effective management process. Don’t do it.

The shock is over.  It’s time to move on.  You’ve had time to figure out that your mission and vision are still viable, or they’re not. Regardless, your strategy must change. You’ve had time to evaluate the future potential of your prior markets, and major changes in customer expectations. Several of your prior assumptions were wrong; you’ve had time to improve or replace them.

Uncertainty is greater than it has been in over 10 years but is likely less than it will be within another 10. Two years ago, I wrote to you: “Roads filled with autonomous vehicles are years away because of sociology, not because of technology.” If making products is your only core competency, I encourage you to develop, or hire, a competency in realistically, not idealistically, assessing changing socioeconomic pressures.

In 2016 I added a brief video to my YouTube channel asking “Would Your Supply Chain Pass a Stress Test?” I also offered insights into how to address the process of finding out. It ended with “Don’t wait for a crisis to begin working on preventing one.”

Many times I’ve explained that you can’t create a future you can’t envision. I’ve written “Never constrain your vision by what you currently know how to do; it is already limited by what you can envision.”

I’ve pleaded that you document key assumptions and have triggers to identify indications that they are becoming misguided.

The purpose of my communications with you is never to say “I told you so.” It is always to provide insights, to poke and prod, to challenge, and to deliver valuable thinking you’re not getting elsewhere.

Check these off one at a time:

  • Mission and vision reassessed and redefined as appropriate?
  • Core values verified and reinforced?
  • Assessment of current reality completed?
  • Major shifts in path identified?
  • Critical requirements of making shifts identified?

There are more, obviously, but walk your team through these steps.

Your boat needs a captain, and then a navigator, considerably more than it needs another fisherman. Ask for help when you need it. Leave flounder behind to create a new future.

The Starting Pistol

Lewis Carroll:
"If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will get you there."

The Tape

Rebecca Morgan:
"Floundering and redirecting are two very different concepts; always be guided by your mission, vision and core values."

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