Happy New Year?
It’s up to you!
There will be tons of predictions and forecasts about 2013 over the next couple of weeks, but management consultant, Peter F. Drucker, said it best when he said, "The only way to predict the future is to create it."
It’s often said that the only two constants in life are death and taxes. And it can be frustrating to realize we have no control over either.
But there is another constant in life called "change". We do control the impact of change in our lives by choosing to adapt to it, to lead it, and to capture every opportunity it presents.
We are seeing unprecedented changes in media, advertising and sales and the way we choose to accept and adapt to those changes is within our control.
I was reminded of the unstoppable nature of change and the value of choosing to embrace it, just last month. The Dunnville Chronicle, a small community newspaper that gave me my start in media, closed its doors after 116 years.
Considering I now make a living helping broadcast and online media to grow their revenues, many of my clients will be surprised to learn I got my start in print.
Those who look for blame in the weekly paper’s death will probably point to either consolidation or technology.
Some will lament the days when the paper’s local owners were an integral part of the community, as passionate about the community’s success as they were about the papers. On its’ death bed, the weekly was owned and managed from afar by large newspaper conglomerate. The failure must be the "fault" of consolidation. Sound familiar?
Others will blame technology or new media. In its hay day the paper employed 14 full time people. Technology had made it possible to produce an arguably better product with only four people and to capture the local news as it happened rather than waiting for the weekly to be printed and delivered.
In reality, my first employer’s demise is nobody’s fault and no one is to blame, any more than someone is to blame for my hair turning grey (although I sometimes joke with my kids that it’s their fault my hair turned grey)
Change is inevitable, not bad, maybe sad, but unstoppable. And I’ve been able to adapt those same interview and questioning skills I learned as a newspaper reporter, to give me a competitive edge when meeting with advertisers today.
The Chronicle’s old linotype operator who refused to learn and adapt to new word processing technology was one of the paper’s first casualties, way back in the early eighties.
The marketing and sales skills I learned when I asked for a transfer from editorial to advertising are now transferable to broadcast and online media.
Most importantly, I saw the writing on the wall many years ago when I left print to get into broadcast. The best way to predict the future really is to create it!
You can’t escape death and taxes, but you can create your future. What kind of future are you going to create in 2013?