"If you are driving along and you see an obstacle way in advance, you can easily adjust your trajectory with a modest turn of the steering wheel. But if you come upon an obstacle suddenly, it requires a huge, sometimes risky, turn." — Rita McGrath
Strategy isn’t about trying to predict the future, it’s about making sure we’re prepared for anything that happens next.
And the further down the road we look—the longer the timescale we operate on—the gentler the adjustments we need to make.
The more we’ll be prepared for, and the less we’ll have to specifically plan for.
Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield put it this way: “When we got back to Earth, a lot of people asked whether everything had gone the way we’d planned. The truth is that nothing went as we’d planned, but everything was within the scope of what we prepared for.”
Because change isn’t on its way. It never left.
The marketer’s job is to observe and influence those changes, not to avoid or ignore them.
So keep your vision far, and your steering gentle. That way, you’re always changing. And yet it feels stable.
Because even if we avoid changing, eventually the road will move out from under us.
Better to have seen it coming.
And prepared for it, no matter where it goes next.