Original publication in Forbes on January 14th 2020

Over the last few years a lot of things have changed.

The way people consume content. The way people sell. The way people buy. The way people research products. The way products are served up in Google. The algorithms that determine what does well on social media. The best way to conduct outreach. The role of technology in sales. The rise of inside sales… and so much more.

Change has been at the heart of the last few years and for many…

That hasn’t been a good thing. We’ve seen countless Medium posts & keynote presentations from people complaining that their world has been flipped upside down because of change. We’ve seen businesses go under. We’ve seen industries get disrupted. We’ve seen brands go from loved to hated. And we’ve seen change across almost every industry and every continent.

But here’s the thing:

We can complain about change… But our complaints won’t stop change from happening. We can complain about disruption. We can complain about new rules. We can complain about algorithms. But these complaints will often result in nothing.

A few years ago, I remember logging into my computer and seeing thousands of tweets and hundreds of posts complaining about Twitter going from 140 characters to 280. Since that change in 2017, Twitter’s market cap has nearly doubled…

And usage is at an all time high.

But the reality was still the same:

The complaints didn’t matter.

All that REALLY mattered was how some people adapted and acted after those changes. Most people don’t realize that most of the tactics that are mastered and invested in will eventually become obsolete.

Don’t be attached to tactics.

Instead, you need to commit to strategies and overarching principles. You need to be willing to adapt and act instead of complaining and whining.

The terrain we navigate in this world of business is always shifting. It’s what keeps things exciting.

The biggest mistake you can make is to consistently rely on outdated maps to navigate a terrain that has changed. This is why you need to embrace change and be flexible with tactics while firm with your objectives & vision.

The best entrepreneurs and most successful people I’ve ever encountered view change as opportunities. Every time an industry is adjusted and the terrain shifts, they don’t get on a soapbox and start complaining. Instead, they analyze the situation and determine how they can adapt, and act, in a way that leaves them better than they would have been if they kept trying to do the same thing.

The importance of adapting and acting is true in sales, marketing, business and life in general. We must define our own principles—your eternal, unchanging truths.

Develop a strategy that will get you closer to your goals and adjust them when there is a very good reason for doing so. Keep in mind the fundamentals and recognize that you should experiment wildly with tactics; you should execute fast and constantly seek to improve on your situation.

History isn’t kind to those who complain and whine. But it loves those who adapt and act.

Written by Steli Efti

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