Businesses urged to pivot, future-proof

Entrepreneurs are advised to pivot and future-proof their businesses to address challenges like the pandemic.

Josiah Go, chairman and chief innovation strategist at Mansmith and Fielders Inc., said he studied 45 companies in 17 countries which changed their target markets and survived during the pandemic even though they were not supposed to be operating because they were non-essential businesses.

Go cited as an example a company which built concert stages. Banking on its resources –carpentry and designing, it developed collapsible work-from-home tables and offered these to the market.

He said the firm now has two businesses –work-from-home tables and chairs and building concert stages– as coronavirus restrictions eased.

“All we need to do is to take a look (at) where we are good at. Use (our) resources,” he said during the recent National MSME (micro, small and medium enterprises) Week 2022. “We should not be prisoners of what we know because what we know is limited.”

Go said the resources block is among the 11 building blocks of a business model imperative even to small businesses.

He identified other building blocks as target market, value proposition, channel, customer bonding, revenue model, value chain, processes, complementors, reconfiguration, and cost.

A free business model map template can be downloaded at

On cost building block, Go said even sari-sari stores and homepreneurs need to bring down their cost by not buying in supermarkets unless for emergency replenishment.

“You need to scale so you can deal with somebody who can offer you avolume purchase at a lower price,” he added. “(Even if you are) hardworking, you will not earn, you will not make money because your cost remains high, you have not scaled, you still buy the way you do it so it’s important to plan.”

On the value proposition block, Go said businesses can communicate their value as some customers are willing to pay a little higher pricefor a better product.

“Instead of pricing it low, all you need to know and this is what many people forget is to communicate the value. You can say why your product is good. For example, (the product is) 10-hour roasted so that people can understand, you need to describe why it is better. For example, oilless so it will attract people who don’t like oil,” he added in mixed English and Filipino.

Go further said the repeat purchase is the real indicator of customer satisfaction.

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