May 17, 2011 / 1:22 PM / 6 years ago

Management Tip of the Day: Help your company shift course

<p>A Wall St. sign is seen in New York's financial district September 16, 2008. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson</p>

BOSTON (Reuters Life!) - If you don’t have a single die-hard fan of your product -- let alone the thousands you’d need to take off -- it’s time to pivot into something your customers are passionate about, says Harvard Business Review.

The Management Tip of the Day offers quick, practical management tips and ideas from Harvard Business Review and HBR.org (www.hbr.org). Any opinions expressed are not endorsed by Reuters.

”A sudden shift in strategic direction can transform a mediocre business idea into a winning one. This kind of pivot may be obvious in hindsight, but re-evaluating your strategy when you’re deep in it isn’t an easy task.

Here are three ways to prime your organization for the shift you may need to make:

1. Keep an idea compost pile. When ideas fail and customers aren’t happy, don’t assume you’ve failed. Recycle: mine these old ideas for new ones.

2. Build a customer-focused culture, not a product-focused one. If your team is wedded to the product, it will stand in the way of a necessary shift. Instead, focus on pleasing your customers and giving them what they want.

3. Don’t limp along. Even if your venture isn’t in danger of failing, don’t settle for mediocrity. Look for the innovation that will raise your game.”

-Today’s management tip was adapted from “The Strategic Pivot: Rules for Entrepreneurs and Other Innovators” by Caroline O‘Connor and Perry Klebahn.

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